Julie Simper

Managing Director

Julie joined Directflight in 1997 as Finance Manager.  In July 2003, following the acquisition of the company by the Aeromega Group, she was appointed as Directflight General Manager.  In 2008 she became the Commercial Director and a shareholder of Directflight and its parent company, Airtask Group.  She was appointed Managing Director of Directflight and Group Managing Director of the Airtask Group in April 2014.


Mike Collins

Flight Operations Manager

Mike joined Directflight in 2006 after an accomplished flying career commencing with gliders in 1971 and culminating as a Captain on the B747F, for the Cathay Pacific Fleet, operating on a worldwide basis. He embraced a number of specialist operations during his flying career which included pilot training, charter, aerial surveys, mapping, scientific research, medevac and outsize/ heavy cargo charters for aerospace companies, relief agencies and military customers. These specialist operations required him to fly a number of unusual aircraft often in remote regions and challenging environments most notably in North Africa, the Middle and Far East, Antarctica, Australia and Russia. He held the positions of Line Training Captain, TRE/IRE and Fleet Captain.

Mike is responsible for the conduct and regulatory compliance of all Directflight fleet operations and is specifically tasked with flight standards and safety management. The breadth and depth of his experience is highly suited to Directflight operations.

Ian Viscogliosi

Maintenance Manager

Ian joined Directflight in May 2012 from Cirrus Airlines in Saarbrucken, Germany, where he held the position of LBA Post Holder Maintenance. During his 4 years at Cirrus he acted in several roles starting in asset management before being asked to re-structure the engineering department.

Ian started his career as an apprentice at Elstree where he was fortunate enough to work on the aircraft used in the film “Battle of Britain” including Messerschmitt ME109s, Spitfires and Sea Furies. During his varied career he has spent time on special projects at McAlpine Aviation and worked all over the world for BP’s oil prospecting division.  Whilst working at Suckling Airways he established the companies Part 145 Maintenance Organisation.

Ian’s primary responsibility is the Continuing Airworthiness Management of the Directflight operated aircraft and oversight of the engineering needs of the company which includes future modifications and enhancements to meet the customers needs.

Nicky Hillyard

Finance Manager


Nicky has a long history with Airtask having joined in December 2012. Her career has provided her with extensive experience in financial accountancy.


Nicky’s role is to provide efficient oversight of the accounting operations of the company to include the production of periodic financial reports, maintenance of an adequate system of accounting records and a comprehensive set of controls and budgets whilst ensuring all financial activities are in line with statutory legislation and regulations.


Rachel Ford

General Manager and Compliance Manager

Rachel joined Directflight in August 2014 from easyJet where she held the position of Emergency Response Manager for four years.  She provided emergency response planning and training for the airline as well as conducting numerous mock exercises in order to maintain a high state of readiness and preparedness.  Previous to that, Rachel was the Flight Safety and Quality Coordinator at bmi where she maintained the safety reporting scheme, assisted with safety investigations and was involved in the flight data monitoring programme.

Rachel is also a volunteer care team member for Kenyon International Emergency Services and in May 2010 responded to the Afriqiyah Airways accident in Tripoli, Libya.

Rachel was promoted to the position of General Manager in 2018 and is the focal point for daily delivery of our contractual responsibilities as well as deputy Accountable Manager and Compliance Manager.

John Lambeth

Ground Operations Manager

John joined the Directflight Operations Team in February 2017 taking on his current role as Ground Operations Manager in 2020. John has an Operational career in excess of 25 years during which time he has held senior positions covering Ground Operations, aircrew Rostering, Passenger and Aircraft handling, in both Military, Civil, Fixed and Rotary Wing environments

As Ground Operations Manager John is responsible for the company’s day to day Operations, has oversight of Dangerous Goods and our various operations bases ensuring all activities are undertaken in compliance with the relevant legislation.

Donna O'Neill

HR and Office Manager

Donna joined Directflight in July 2013 as the PA to the Senior Management Team and after successfully gaining a formal qualification, took on her current role of HR and Office Manager in March 2016.

Along with daily oversight of the administrative functions of Head Office, Donna is responsible for all personnel related issues including recruitment and the regular review of Staff handbooks and Company Policies to ensure compliance with current legislation.

Jon Bowland

Safety Manager

Jon joined Airtask as Deputy Flight Operations Manager in 2019 after a varied RAF and civilian flying career, most recently as a Captain on Dash 7 and Twin Otter for the British Antarctic Survey. He has been involved in a wide spectrum of flying roles including pilot training, trials flying, scientific research, maritime surveillance, SAR, cargo and passenger transport in environments from Afghanistan to Antarctica. Jon is also an experienced manager with a particular interest in risk management.


As Safety Manager Jon is responsible for managing the safety of Airtask’s operations and people and the development of the Safety Management System, and holds a current type rating on the company F406 aircraft