Viki Cole Flys Away to New Endeavors
Last updated 3/3/2021 at 11:09am
Viki Cole is leaving her 30-year stint as Borrego Springs Airport Manager, and overseeing the airports at Ocotillo Wells and Agua Caliente.
“Leaving is bittersweet. I love my job,” stated Cole, whose new five-year contract proposal to the County Airport Authority was underbid by another applicant.
Cole first became manager 30 years ago and was employed by Bill Wright. At that time, it was BASIC, where they had a flight school for the local children interested in flying.
Cole, who is a flyer herself, and maintains a hangar, is well-known to both Borrego and other flying communities.
“I’m not leaving Borrego Springs. It’s my home. But, I’m excited about getting back to my art work and writing,” Cole said.
“There wasn’t enough time managing the airport to really indulge myself in these pursuits, and I welcome having more time to explore new opportunities.”
When she first moved to Borrego, Cole taught an art class through Palomar College, via satellite, and art has always been a love of hers, as well as a career. She previously taught art at San Diego State University and Palomar, and admitted to looking forward to new adventures.
Cole is the mother of two grown sons Brett and Chad, and a daughter, Heather Moates. Her youngest son Chad works as a contractor on the coast, and Heather is a realtor in Carlsbad. The oldest, Brett, worked with her as assistant airport manager for nearly 15 years.
“He did a great job. I know our flyers appreciated the way he took extra time to help them with issues like starting planes,” she said.
According to Cole, working at the airport was never boring. She particularly enjoyed community events like Chamber of Commerce Sundowners, and competitions among flyers. Cole believes the airport is a gateway to the community, and shared her knowledge of the community’s wealth of tourism opportunities, advising new arrivals of what to do and see in Borrego and the Anza-Borrego Desert.
Occasionally, as airport manager, Cole was made painfully aware of the risks of flying with the loss of friends in airplane crashes. She lost two friends just this year.
“Time stops for them, but not for me and others they leave behind,” she noted.
“I really want to thank my dear friends, the flying community and everyone in Borrego that have been so supportive of the airport. I have memories, and made friends I will cherish forever.”
Meadow Chase from Ramona will be replacing Cole.
“I hope you will all welcome my replacement as you welcomed me,” Cole requested.
“Be seeing you at the Propeller,” she added.