Marty ‘JD’ McDonough

Advanced Instructor Pilot

Marty ‘JD’ McDonough

Marty ‘JD’ McDonough, Chief of Safety and Advanced Instructor Pilot, joined Aviation Performance Solutions in September of 2014. Prior to this he served in the Active Duty USAF for almost 23 years.

JD started his flying career as a cadet at the United States Air Force Academy in their glider program where after soloing he stayed on to teach others how to fly and get their solo wings. He graduated from the Academy in 1989 and went on to undergraduate pilot training (UPT) at Columbus AFB, MS. When he graduated from UPT, he received an assignment to stay at Columbus to be an instructor in the supersonic T-38 jet trainer. Over his three and a half year tour as an instructor at Columbus, JD received several honors to include officer of the quarter, instructor pilot of the quarter and T-38 instructor pilot of the year for 1993. He finished his tour there as a check pilot and evaluator as the assistant flight commander for check flight.

JD then moved on to fly the venerable A/OA-10 Warthog. He graduated from the A/OA-10 Fighter Training Unit with top academic honors and moved on to his first assignment at Osan AB in the Republic of Korea. His other A-10 assignments included Pope AFB in North Carolina, Spangdahlem AB in Germany, Ramstein AB in Germany and Davis-Monthan AFB in Tucson Arizona. During his A-10 career he again garnered several awards to include Company and Field Grade officer of the quarter awards, and several “Top Gun” awards from single day “Turkey Shoots” and quarterly competitions. While serving as a Warthog pilot JD deployed 7 times in support of various operations from Kuwait to Kosovo to Afghanistan. He flew 368 combat hours and amongst other decorations, was awarded 6 Air Medals, 12 Aerial Achievement Medals and the Bronze Star.

During his last assignment in the A-10 at Davis-Monthan AFB, JD served as the Director of Operations (DO) for the 354th Fighter Squadron “Bulldogs”, and as the Squadron Commander of the 355 Operations Support Squadron. While serving as DO, JD deployed to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. He and the commander led the squadron through this successful deployment which culminated in the squadron winning the Air Force Level 2006 David C. Schilling award for the most outstanding contribution to the field of flight. He retired from the Air Force in February of 2012 as a Lieutenant Colonel.

JD’s primary duties at APS include Upset Prevention and Recovery Training, academic briefings, running the company safety program and Adventure Flights. JD has over 5500 flights hours in the A-10, T-38, light GA aircraft and gliders. His love for aviation is only surpassed by his passion for teaching. JD has a BS degree in Engineering Sciences from the United States Air Force Academy and an MA in Aeronautical Sciences from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University.

JD enjoys endurance events, has completed eight marathons and recently completed his first triathlon. He likes to spend his free time golfing, refereeing soccer or spending time with his three daughters and girlfriend Alice.

Instructor Experience

  • 2-Time Master CFI – Aerobatic
  • CFII
  • USAF Pilot Instructor Training Graduate – T-38 (~1200 Hrs)
  • Instructor Course Graduate – A-10 (~2500 Hrs)
  • Part 142/121, B757 Simulator Instructor

Military Experience

  • Retired Air Force, 23 yrs service: T-38, A/OA-10
  • 368 Combat Hours (OSW, OAF, OEF)
  • T-38 Instructor Pilot
  • A-10 Formal Training Course Instructor
  •  Commander, 355th Operations Support Squadron
  • Director of Operations, 354th Fighter Squadron
  • Chief, 355th Fighter Wing Inspections, Plans and Programs
  • USAF Aircraft Accident Investigation Course for Board President Graduate
  •  USAF Aircraft Mishap Investigation Course Graduate
  • USAF Advanced Instrument Course Graduate
  • Military Liaison to the US Embassy, Kabul Afghanistan
  • Graduate: Air Command and Staff College, Air War College

Flight Experience

  • Aircraft Flown: T-37, T-38, A/OA-10A/C, Cessna 152, Cessna 172, Piper Cherokee, Piper Seminole, Mooney M-20C, Super Decathlon, Extra 300L
  • Airline Transport Pilot, B757/767 Type
  • Endorsements: Tailwheel, Complex, High Performance
  • 5500+ Flight Hours


  •   BS: Engineering Sciences, United States Air Force Academy
  •   MAS: Aeronautical Sciences, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University