Robert (Bob) Cook has had a lifetime career as a pilot and instructor in aviation. He spent 20 years in the Royal Australian Air Force, two years in General Aviation and 16 years in the Civil Aviation Safety Authority Australia. While in the RAAF he completed an Accident Investigation and Safety Officer course at the UCLA in the US and specialised in Aviation Human Factors both in the RAAF and in CASA. He also completed the senior officer staff college course and he holds a science degree in physics.
He has been flying hot air balloons for over 20 years, mostly with the RAAF in a Reservist position. More recently he has held the position of National Safety Officer for the Australian Ballooning Federation. He was awarded the Paul Tissandier Diploma in October 2011 as NSO in recognition of his contribution to safety in Australian recreational balloon operations. He has been the event safety officer at the last three Australian National Balloon Championships.
As a CASA inspector he was initially employed for two years in Standards Development where he teamed with another inspector to entirely rewrite Pilot Licensing Standards (Part 61). This period exposed him to the drafting of aviation standards and regulations. He was then promoted to the position of Manager Flight Crew Licensing to manage the implementation and on-going administration of the new regulations. He held this position for four years before moving into the CASA Training Development and Safety Education section. He developed and delivered a five-day Aviation Human Factors course for both CASA and Industry personnel.
Bob lives in Canberra Australia and has a lovely wife as well as numerous children and grand children. He exercises regularly and doesn’t mind a glass of red wine.