People often ask how I ended up with two concurrent careers: one in air traffic control and one in personal injury law. I guess it’s my short attention span combined with my lack of any real direction that landed me here. After finishing high school, I joined the military and worked in flight path management under the excellent tutelage of an FAA Controller. When I returned to Louisiana after three tours with the military, I enrolled in a Bachelor’s Program, pre-law. Then I enrolled in Law School at Loyola and completed my FAA courses on the side. Suddenly, I was 32 years old, in crippling debt, but with two clear career options. I decided to pursue both.
My name is Ryan, I’m – again – from Louisiana. I grew up in a house outside of New Orleans (Metairie) with my mom. I’ve lived in New Orleans for about ten years now, my mom’s still in Metairie, and I work for an organization that aims to provide trained community volunteers to advocate for the best interest of abused and neglected children in court. The goal is to ensure that every child has a safe, permanent and nurturing home.
This is something I was so lucky to have as a child, especially growing up in a single-parent home and I can’t imagine my childhood without a safe home. This work feels important to me, it feels valuable, and it keeps me involved in the failing court system around here.
As you can imagine, it’s a high stress job and aviation control serves some balance in my life. While my aforementioned work deals exclusively with children and court appointed special advocacy, air traffic controlling is much more systematic and consistent. There are fewer emotions involved.
And maintaining both allows me to feel like there’s some possibility of paying off my student loans ever in my life!