Welcome to READY ROOM

About Us

READY ROOM - Where Naval Aviators plan and prepare for their next mission


READY ROOM is a Charleston, South Carolina based firm of career Naval Aviators, mostly Admirals, dedicated to the growth and development of industry-leading aerospace and specialty light manufacturing companies through the creation of strong partnerships with outstanding management teams. 

READY ROOM'S unique approach focuses on operational excellence, practical leadership and insightful strategic analysis, rather than financial engineering. The principals of READY ROOM have significant, extensive leadership and operating experience and work closely with portfolio company management teams to continue to grow companies and improve profitability.


READY ROOM is a team of retired Naval Aviators and Navy Test Pilots (mostly Admirals) who have excelled in high-risk situations where failure isn’t an option. 

READY ROOM members have board level and C-suite relationships across the Fortune 500, the US military, and most Federal agencies. Our subsequent senior executive experience was with premier branded global aerospace and manufacturing Fortune 500 firms.   

READY ROOM uses rigorous methodologies and processes to lead firms to revenue and earnings growth and operational improvement.

We lead, manage and grow portfolio companies by applying our governance, financial and operational improvement experience; and lead best of target company management teams.  



Founder, Senior Managing Partner & CEO

Former Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) corporate Vice President for Business Improvement reporting  to JNJ’s executive committee. Led enterprise-wide operational and financial performance  reforms across JNJ’s $70B revenue, 200 companies in 175 countries, including expanding  Neutrogena from $225M to $1B sales in 4 years. Subsequently, Revlon corporate Senior Vice  President & member of Revlon’s Executive Committee. Senior Adviser (Under-Secretary rank)  to three U.S. Veterans Affairs Cabinet Secretaries and sole independent member of the VA’s  Executive Operating Committee responsible for $150B budget & 330,000 employees. Career  Naval Aviator with 4300 flight hours, aerial combat instructor, Viet Nam and Gulf War veteran.  Top-rated US Naval Academy Economics professor, USNA Director of Resources & CFO.  Wharton Advanced Management & US Naval Post-Graduate School MS Financial Management 



Principal & Managing Partner

Former Sentek Corp VP (cyber security) where he expanded Sentek 700% revenues in 3 years; he subsequently was an advisor to Lockheed,  led NATO Operations where he was responsible for all military operations across NATO countries and the U.S. European Command from Norway to South Africa; Commander of Carrier Battle Group ONE, Naval Aviation Personnel (HR) Commander, Navy Air-Wing & Fighter Squadron Commander, Top Gun Instructor, over 1000 carrier landings. Viet Nam, Gulf War & War on Terror veteran. MS George Washington University, US National War College.



Principal & Managing Partner

Former Northrop Grumman Corp Director Government Sales; Homeland Security Dept. Senior Executive (SES); Deputy Commander Air Operations Southwest Asia (1000 combat aircraft); Commander Navy Operational Test & Evaluation Force; Commander Naval Safety Center; Commanding Officer of aircraft carrier USS America and an all-weather A6 Intruder attack squadron; holds two Distinguished Flying Crosses for aerial combat, Bronze Star, three Air Medals with over 4,000 flight hours and more than 1,100 carrier arrested landings. Auburn University BS Aerospace Management, FAA A&P Certificate.


Ready Room Members


COL Steve Hanvey, USMCR (RET)  

Former CEO Piaggio Aircraft (Americas); VP Raytheon’s Beech Aircraft; Director/Program Manager McDonnell Douglas Aircraft AH-64 Helicopter Program; Chief Test Pilot – McDonnell Douglas Aircraft; USMC & USN Instructor Test Pilot (holds 2-world records: fastest climb); USMC & USN Helicopter Squadron leadership roles with Silver Star, Distinguished Flying Cross, 16-Air Medals, Purple Heart. MS University Southern California, MBA Clemson University, BS US Naval Academy, US Navy Test Pilot School, Awarded Jimmy Doolittle Aeronautics Award.


CAPT Robert LaBelle, USN (RET)  

Former Chairman & CEO of Augusta-Westland North America & Executive Committee Member of Italy’s Leonardo $6B global helicopter manufacturer; previous President of Augusta Westland Tilt rotor Company, Inc., where he led development & sales of the AW-609 tilt-rotor and other aircraft development programs. Commanded a carrier based S3B Viking sea control squadron and CEO of Navy E-2, S-3 and C-2 aircraft programs. DOD major program Acquisition University, SUNY BS Business.




COL William Flannery, USMC (RET)  

Current USMC combat requirements adviser to FA18 and F35 Aircraft Program CEO; Commanded Marine Corps EA6B Prowler electronic warfare squadron VMAQ-1 in Gulf War and USMC/USN EA6B aircraft electronic warfare Training Group. Gulf War veteran. Bronze Star & 4-Air Medals for aerial combat. BS US Naval Academy, MBA Troy University, MS National Defense University. 


LCDR Robert Rippee, USN (RET) 

University Nevada Las Vegas Business Professor; Sands Corp SVP CMO for world’s largest game & hospitality group incl Las Vegas Venetian and Palazzo hotels; University of Georgia Terry College of Business Professor; Sea Island Resort Company CMO; Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company CMO; Naval aviator and aerial combat instructor; MBA University of Georgia, BS University of Wyoming.


LCDR John Stickford, USN (RET) 

Former Operations and Marketing Senior Executive for Orbitz, DuPont, Kraft and Sara Lee; Dunrath Private Equity Group Partner; Navy A6 Intruder attack squadron leadership & aerial combat instructor roles. MBA Northwestern University Kellogg School, BA Holy Cross.





VADM Norm Ray, USN (RET) 

Chairman, Ready Room Advisers  

Raytheon President (Europe), NATO Assistant Secretary, NATO Military Committee Vice Chairman, Assistant to Navy Secretary, Commander Naval Air Station Jacksonville & Patrol Squadron 56. Navy Test Pilot. Viet Nam & Gulf War Veteran.


VADM Joseph Dyer, USN (RET) 

Former i-Robot Corp CEO, Commander Naval Air Systems Command (aircraft & systems acquisition), FA18 Hornet Aircraft Program CEO, Navy test pilot, Viet Nam and Gulf War veteran.

MG Leo Williams, USMC (RET)  

Vice Chairman US Naval Academy Alumni Association, former Ford Motor Corporation Senior Executive for Ford’s SUV & F150 Pickup Group, Viet Nam and Gulf War veteran.

RADM Jim Grunewald, USN (RET) 

Advisor to Boeing Corporation (Asia), Former Commander Naval Fleet Air Forces Pacific, Patrol Wing 5, Patrol Squadron 47, Defense liaison to State Department, Gulf War and War on Terror veteran. 

CAPT Scott Aultman, USN (RET)

Former NASA Astronaut (4 Shuttle Missions), Navy Test Pilot, Gulf War veteran.

Contact Us



(843) 819-0075