Curtis Taylor works as the Air Service Development Coordinator for the Indianapolis Airport Authority (IAA). As Air Service Development Coordinator, Curtis is responsible for tracking air service data, identifying air service opportunities, and creating connections with the IAA’s airline partners. His efforts in meeting one-on-one with various airline decision-makers help bring on additional nonstop flight options for the city of Indianapolis. Curtis played a key role during the 2020 Routes Americas Conference hosted in Indianapolis, which is a premiere air service development conference that is estimated to have a short-term $2 million and $40 million long-term local economic impact for the city and state.
Before working at the IAA full-time, Curtis started his professional career as an intern for the Indianapolis Airport Authority (IAA) during his time in school. Curtis obtained his Bachelor of Science (BS) from Ball State University with a focus in Computer Information Systems and his Master of Science (MS) from Purdue University focused in Aviation & Aerospace Management. Curtis currently serves on the Indy Aviation Career Education (ACE) Academy Board, is an Emerging Leaders member of the Airport Minority Advisory Council (AMAC), and a member of the Government Alliance of Race and Equity (GARE). Curtis was recently recognized by the Center for Leadership Development (CLD) as an “Up and Coming Achiever” at the 2021 Minority Achiever Awards & Scholarship Gala. Curtis’ hometown is Indianapolis, Indiana
The 1828 Leadership Project, presented by Citizens Energy Group, is a civic leadership tract for Indy’s young leaders with the goal of fostering intentional relationships with a cross-sector of Indianapolis’ thought leaders and decision makers. Curtis is a part of 1828’s Class XI . Learn more about him below.
How do you spend your days? For example, you can tell us about your career, side hustle or exercise routine whatever you want to share. We’re ready to listen.
I mostly spend my days doing the job I love, as an avgeek I enjoy my role working at the airport to the increase the nonstop flight offering from our amazing airport. Outside of my job, I generally spend most of my time exercising either by lifting weights or shooting some hoops at a local gym. I then usually like to find time to spend with family and friends by either going out to dinner or enjoying a night out on the town. However, I do like my alone time where I can enjoy my space at home and just watching some of my favorite TV shows or movies, or if basketball is on, watching my favorite players battle it out on the court.
Where in Indianapolis did you grow up?
Grew up in Pike Township. Went to school at St. Monica through 8th grade and Cardinal Ritter for high school.
When thinking about the future of Indianapolis, what are you most looking forward to in the next 5 years and why?
In the next 5 years, my vision is to have increased air service connectivity from Indy to places around the world. Connecting Indianapolis with new growing tech markets, and other world-class international cities can help Indy build upon the already vibrant group of young people we have here today. Having additional flight options for the community not only makes Indianapolis more attractive to a newer, younger workforce, but it also allows many new types of travelers a chance to travel the world from right here in Indy. As the city grows with easy access to other growing tech markets and cultural hubs, there are opportunities to build a better, more culturally diverse city. Which in turn, will attract even more talent from outside of the city and allow us to keep our local talent.
Are there any local causes that you support? What are they and how might others learn more or get involved?
The Indianapolis Aviation Career Education (ACE) Academy is an organization that is a program designed to offer an introduction to the aviation industry and also expose aviation jobs and careers to middle and high school students. Students are provided with opportunities to learn about the many careers available in the aviation industry. Within this program I volunteer and mentor students and I am a currently a Board member. The program offers summer camps available to kids in middle and high school and is open to students from all backgrounds. Indy ACE has a website where you can sign up students who might be interested. It is one of my favorite things to be involved in locally. Mentoring students and helping the next-generation of aviation professionals is certainly a passion of mine and this program is perfect for any student with these interests.
You have a day off and you’re in Indianapolis. Share the agenda for your perfect Indy day.
First, I’d have breakfast with friends at YOLK downtown. Then I’d go play basketball at a local park or gym. I’d grab lunch at Arni’s Restaurant and take a nice nap before heading to Tony’s downtown for a nice steak dinner. Then, I’d finish my night by going to Escape Room Indy!
Indianapolis is a sprawling county, what’s your favorite part about our city?
I like the little niche local spots you can find by just driving around. I like trying new places, and I love just being able to hop out on any side of town and being able to test out new local spots to shop, hang out, or eat.I also enjoy how walkable our downtown is. Our very easy and connected downtown is something that I think differentiates us from other cities. We still have a vibrant downtown environment that is also very accessible by scooter, bike, or on foot.
How do you define success?
When you reach a point in your life when you are truly happy and have made a lasting impact on the next generation of people trying to emulate your success.
What would you name the autobiography of your life?
Curtis E Taylor Jr: Small Kid Big Dreams. I was always pretty short growing up, but I always felt like the sky was the limit in terms of success for me, so I never let my short stature deter me from dreaming big!