Jane Rosevelt, an energetic woman well past he age to file for social security benefits, is the chief pilot at Rose Air; in fact, she’s the only pi- lot. Rosevelt started Rose Air; her one-airplane on-demand air taxi flight service because she
was seeking a way to pay for what she’s jokingly refers to as,
“her evil habit of flying airplanes.”
Rosevelt’s almost instantaneous realization that she need-
ed to make flying a part of her life came years after her first
Many years ago Rosevelt met a pilot during a hostelling bicycle tour. When Rosevelt mentioned that she was planning
to move west the pilot told her that he was too, and that she
was welcome to travel with him in his airplane. Rosevelt said
yes to what she hoped would be an exciting adventure. In
preparation she packed and shipped her belongings to California. After traveling to Illinois by train she was startled to find
the pilot’s airplane was fabric covered.
“At that point I didn’t have any choice,” said Rosevelt. She
agreed to go along but it wasn’t the
adventure she had hoped for.
“It took us almost a week,” said
Rosevelt. “I can’t say it was my favorite experience. Half the
time I fell asleep and the other half I was hanging on,” she
by Steven Ells
the Ground Bound Years
After her tense and slow trip westward Rosevelt settled in to
work as a nurse practitioner for a large hospital in Califor-
nia’s San Fernando Valley. Alas, by the end of the second de-
cade since she had climbed out of that little fabric-covered air-
plane in Oxnard, Rosevelt felt as if Califonia was no longer her
One day, as she was again inching home on yet another
traffic-clogged freeway Rosevelt glanced skyward as a light
airplane flew freely above. In 1989 her partner bought Rose-
velt an introductory flight.
“After that flight I couldn’t stop thinking about flying,” said
Rosevelt. After a move to Portland, Oregon, Rosevelt got a private pilot license at Hillsboro Aviation at the Hillsboro airport
(KHIO) in September 1990. Over the course of the next two
years Rosevelt obtained a commercial rating, a certified flight
instructor (CFI) rating and a certified flight instructor instrument (CFII) rating.
About this time a small inheritance helped Rosevelt buy her
first airplane—a 1982 TR-182 Cessna. The Cessna was turbo-charged and had retractable landing gear.
Rosevelt knew she needed to keep flying to keep her ratings up and stay current but soon realized that she needed to
find a way to pay for her flying. She tried flight instructing but
soon understood that her TR 182 was not suited for training
students.”Flight instructing was for the birds,” says Rosevelt.
the Do it Yourself Air taxi Article
As Rosevelt pondered the economic realities of airplane ownership, she came across an article titled, Do-It-Yourself Air Carrier; Starting your own Part 135 operation, by Wayne Phillips
in the June 1995 issue of Flight Training magazine. According
to the article all that was required to apply for a Part 135 single pilot air taxi operator (SPATO) certificate was a commercial certificate and 500 hours total flight time.
“That article started me thinking about it,” said Rosevelt. It
didn’t take her long to make up her mind.
“From the day I read the article and got all excited and
called the FAA, it took me nine months to get my certificate,”
said Rosevelt. She was 53 years old when she submitted the
applications to the FAA. Rosevelt called her company Rose
Air. It’s been operating continuously out of the Hillsboro airport since 1996.
Rosevelt does all the flying, flight scheduling, and works
with Hillsboro Aviation to see that the maintenance is kept