avatar for Captain Brian Townsend

Captain Brian Townsend

American Airlines
Manager and Technical Pilot, Airspace Optimization

Captain Brian Townsend, Manager and Technical Pilot for Airspace Optimization at American Airlines, supports the company’s NextGen initiatives and system airspace activities. Through his efforts, the airline has become a recognized leader in the development and successful implementation of performance-based operations resulting in optimized and integrated procedures in many areas of the NAS.  

Brian currently leads the airline’s ADS-B In program, which continues to work closely with the SBS Program Office to develop and explore the operational benefits that ADS-B can bring to the flight deck and PBN operations.

Captain Townsend also serves as a member and in leadership roles with various stakeholder groups and action teams; including the CNS (Communication, Navigation and Surveillance) Task Force, Industry Technical Pilot Work Group and as a co-chair on various PARC (Performance-Based Aviation Operations Rule Making Committee) and RTCA work groups and committees.

Supporting RTCA has been a priority for several years.  He has participated in special committees covering UAS, Data Comm, ADS-B, Trajectory Operations, Class B Airspace and Task Force 5.  More recently, Brian serves as co-chair for the PBN Blueprint and Community Outreach Task Groups and the PBN NextGen Integration Work Group.

Brian has been a professional pilot for thirty-six years; flying a variety of transport and general aviation aircraft.  He devoted seven years to general aviation as a professional flight instructor and fixed-base/airport operations manager, as well as a pilot for a Fortune 50 company, and is serving his twenty-sixth year in the ranks of a major airline.