Dennis R. Gardisser, Ph.D., P.E.
Dennis was born and raised on a relatively large dairy farm in NW Arkansas. After graduating high school and attending computer operating school, he spent four years in the USMC. Twenty-seven months were spent in Vietnam - flying as a crewmember on EC-121 Constellation and P-3 Orion AWAC aircraft. Dennis retired in January 2009 with over 30 years’ service from his duties as Associate Department Head – Extension Engineer of the Biological & Agricultural Engineering Department at the University of Arkansas, Division of Agriculture – Cooperative Extension Service.
Dennis has been working with the agricultural aviation industry since the mid-70s. His Ph.D. dissertation studied the design parameters of fertilizer spreaders - "Computer Simulation of Dry Material Distribution Patterns from Agricultural Aircraft". Dennis was a partner with WRK, Incorporated and now owns and operates WRK of Arkansas LLC. WRK has been a leader in the development of agricultural aircraft analysis equipment, software, and techniques. Dennis has traveled all over the world working with applicators and providing chemical application training to a variety of groups. WRK has trained more than 95% of all S.A.F.E. analysts. WRK's expertise has been utilized in oil spill, mosquito, biological, boll weevil, firefighting, forest re-seeding, illegal crop control, and other applications. WRK conducted Operation S.A.F.E. workshops in 29 U.S. locations in 2010 and 7 CAP Clinics in Canada. Dennis has also been very active on several NAAA committees, including Operation S.A.F.E. and the PAASS Program Development Committee, and has helped develop several of the recent PAASS training modules.
Dennis is also a pilot and lives on a fly-in community airport just east of Little Rock - Country Air Estates, www.countryairestates.com, 1AR9. Dennis partners on a BE36 Bonanza and owns a Maule M7-260C. He utilizes both flying coast-to-coast conducting WRK business. Dennis is a CFI and a FAAST Team Leader and holds a commercial ag rating and says he flies ag just enough to have a real appreciation for those of you that fly full time. In addition to being an NAAA member, Dennis is a life member of the Arkansas, Colorado, and Missouri associations and a member of the Canadian AAA. Accomplishments include several service awards, National Agricultural Aviation and Arkansas Aviation Hall of Fames, Agrinaut and Delta Puffer awards and member of the NAAA Falcon club and recipient of the Lee Abide award - 2005 from MS AAA. Dennis was selected by the FAA as the Arkansas and Southwest Region Aviation Safety Counselor of the year for 2004, Arkansas Safety Counselor and CFI of the Year in 2008. Dennis is co-chair of the Arkansas Junior Aviator of the Year and a member of the CFI of the year committees.
Dennis spends a great deal of time working with tort litigation issues revolving around chemical applications. He will be the first to tell you that professionalism and strong education programs will help you provide a better service and may be a real asset should you be unlucky enough to find yourself defending your application to regulatory bodies or the courts.
Dennis recently started an aviation insurance agency and is very active with that in the agricultural aviation community. Dennis plans to continue working with agricultural aviation as a consultant conducting educational programs, fly-ins, field research, litigation work, aviation insurance, and perhaps a bit more time to do ag flying.