ACE Academy helps turn Nathan Johnson’s aviation interest into passion

We often don’t realize the impact our actions can have on others. Complementing a stranger, giving friendly advice and other seemingly insignificant things can change the trajectory of a person’s day. Those kindnesses can sometimes change the path of someone’s life as well.

Dan Conner, ITD Airport Manager with the Division of Aeronautics, was lucky to experience this when a friend’s son had an interest in aviation.

“We were sitting around a campfire on a hunting trip in 2019 when I learned that my friend’s son, Nathan, was interested in a career in aviation,” said Conner. “I recommended that he enroll in the ACE Academy to learn more about what he can do in the industry.”

Nathan attended the the Division of Aeronautics’ ACE Academy that year. That experience turned his interest into passion.

“I received Nathan’s high school graduation announcement this past June and learned that he is attending Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University to continue his education,” said Conner.

Nathan’s father, Brett Johnson, said that Nathan still talks about what he learned in the ACE Academy.

The ACE Academy is held in Boise early each summer. For more information about the program or to apply, please contact or call 208 334-8780.

Nathan (second from right) at the 2019 ACE Academy.
Dan Conner
Nathan at Embry-Riddle.