Pilot turns lifelong passion into career
From engineering to pilot training, Robert Rinne’s (MBA ’89) life revolves around aviation.
Rinne spends his weekdays as a director with Allegiant Air, a Las Vegas airline that operates across the U.S.
On the weekends, he’s flying small planes and gliders. He also gives sightseeing flights and jointly owns a business that buys, restores and leases gliders.
“I was born with a love of aviation,” Rinne says. “My father and three of my uncles all had pilot’s certificates at some point in their lives, and I was always infatuated with the sensation of flight.”
Rinne was working full time as a mechanical designer when he decided to transition into operations management. That’s when he turned to the Bloch School.
“The UMKC evening MBA program enabled me to balance an advanced degree program with my professional and family obligations,” Rinne says.
While at Bloch, Rinne took a business law class that sparked an interest in contracts, which would become a primary career focus for him.
Today, Rinne manages a team that supports nearly every department at Allegiant Air.
“This broad range of support requires familiarization with almost every aspect of an airline operation,” Rinne says. “Every day is different, and there is never a dull moment.”
This article originally appeared in the special edition of the UMKC Perspectives alumni magazine. To read more stories of alumni from across the country, click here.