Joseph "Gordo" Sanders Jr.

FAA Designated Pilot Examiner


Joey Sanders is a veteran pilot and instructor in his fourth decade as an aviator. He is a retired United States Air Force Lieutenant Colonel, having served 23 years as an aviator in the Alabama Air National Guard. He flew RF-4 Phantoms in the 106th TRS, "Recce Rebels," and later KC-135 Tankers. He is a veteran of several military campaigns and foreign conflicts including Desert Shield/Storm, Kosovo, and more recently, Operations Noble Eagle and Enduring Freedom.  His previous military career combined with his vast experience as a DPE a, have made him a recognized expert with respect to military competency ratings.

As accomplished air race & air show demo pilot, he holds multiple championship titles in his Reno Air Racer, the legendary "Big Red." Additionally, he holds a Class II 250' foot waver for solo and formation aerobatics.

He holds various type-ratings, an A&P Mechanic certificate, is a Certified Flight Instructor, as well as a certified aerobatic pilot. Gordo is a native of Jasper, Alabama, where he resides, and he currently serves as a Captain on the 777-200ER for a major international carrier out of Memphis, TN.

Sanders Flight Training Center