Profile - Zach Lewis | D-21616

by Brian Giboney

PROFILE20157Photographer Zach Lewis took to the skies in 1997 and naturally gravitated toward camera flying. Attracted to the precision and engineering of formation skydiving, he became a successful camera flyer for nationally competitive FS teams in his native Texas. In addition to contributing many remarkable photos to Parachutist , he authors a popular photo-interview series in Blue Skies Magazine that combines his good-humored inquisitiveness with his photography talent. more »

How Skydiving Changed My Life - J.T. Valente

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by J.T. Valente | D-26340 | Mount Holly, New Jersey

When I was 9 years old, I witnessed my first skydive. That was when I knew my dream of flying could become reality. Nine years later, I made plans to jump with a friend who worked for a skydiver. We toasted with a few drinks on the eve of our big event. The next morning he chickened out, and I was left without a connection to the sky. more »

Gearing Up - July 2015

EdScott

One way USPA engages in its mission of “supporting safe skydiving and those who enjoy it” is through a very active government relations effort aimed at removing obstacles to drop zone establishment and reducing government burden on established DZs. Usually these efforts take the form of advocating against restrictive regulations (whether local, state or federal) or challenging arbitrary decisions by government employees that unfairly try to deny skydivers the use of airports and airspace. But occasionally overzealous tax agents see busy DZs and think that government deserves a place at the banquet table, and USPA has to act to keep them away. more »

Profile - Olav Zipser | D-11733

by Brian Giboney

PROFILE20156Olav Zipser, D-11733, spearheaded the freefly revolution of the early 1990s. Zipser founded the Space Games freefly competition and has earned numerous championships and records, as well as an Emmy award for his work on ESPN’s “X-Games.” He has traveled extensively for decades teaching jumpers all over the world his art of freeflying, and his students say he has a Zen-like presence in the sky. more »

How Skydiving Changed My Life - Tiffany Becker

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by Tiffany Becker | C-40498 | Acworth, Georgia

"I'll never, ever skydive." I said those words out loud at one point in my life, partly because I was genuinely scared and partly because I could sense the pull toward the sky. Later, as a single, 27-year-old woman, I heard my sister say she would skydive, and I caught myself responding that I would jump with her. I seemed to have forgotten about that "never, ever" part and made tandem reservations for the two of us. We spent the day at the hangar waiting out clouds, and when it came time for us to jump, we had the plane to ourselves. I didn't want to witness my sister falling out of the plane, so I volunteered to jump ahead of her. My first thought once I landed was, "Why was I so scared of this? It's amazing!" After we walked back to the hangar, my tandem instructor gave me a brochure about AFF, and that's when I knew I was hooked. more »

Gearing Up - June 2015

EdScott

Some longtime members may have begun to wonder if they somehow missed a recent election of USPA board members. They didn’t. An election is scheduled for this fall, and for those interested in running for the board, the process begins now. Anyone who has been a USPA member in good standing for two years and who is at least 18 years old as of August 1 can submit the required materials described below to qualify as a candidate. more »

Profile - Mark Brown | D-16235

by Brian Giboney

PROFILE20155Mark “Green Hornet” Brown began skydiving in 1991 after losing an office bet, and he fell in love with the sport. Twelve thousand jumps later, he is still in love with skydiving and the people in it. This makes him excel at bringing people together as the head formation skydiving organizer with Perris Organizers at Skydive Perris in California. He also has the rare ability to fill any slot on a load and nail the jump. Whether an AFF jump, a 10-way, a 150-way or a 300-way, the Green Hornet is always there for his friends in the sky. more »

How Skydiving Changed My Life - Ted Atkins

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by Ted Atkins | A-73783 | Notts, United Kingdom

“Tell me that again? Your first jump was from 29,000 feet?” Yes. It's a bit of a story... more »

Gearing Up - May 2015

EdScott

In a stunning display of engagement with USPA’s governance process, members of the Gulf Region flooded USPA’s inbox with their comments and suggestions concerning who should become their new USPA Regional Director and thus the newest member of the USPA Board of Directors. The opportunity arose when Todd Spillers recently announced his need to resign his position due to a career opportunity. more »

Profile - Roberta Mancino | D-29203

by Brian Giboney

PROFILE20154Professional model and skydiver Roberta Mancino, D-29203, is one of the most beautiful people in the world, but she is also an amazing, world-class athlete. Thankfully, the world is taking notice of her skill at jumping from planes and fixed objects, flying in wind tunnels and diving with undersea creatures. She has appeared on the TBS talk show “Conan,” and Men's Fitness magazine named her the World's Sexiest Female Athlete. As a skydiver, Mancino first focused on freestyle and then dedicated herself to wingsuiting. Through it all, she’s had a dramatic positive influence on the sport and proved that skydivers are not just crazy people, they’re beautiful people, too. more »