Roland Johnsson: Vice-President Europe

How did I get into flying?

My flying life began on a lovely summer day in 1969. My father asked me if I would like to learn to fly. Having no clue what it was about I said yes, and got my first flying experience in an old Bergfalke glider at the local airfield.

So, my flying background is from gliders. The first years I was flying cross-country but later mainly doing glider aerobatics.

Alas, gliding has its limitations, which is why I moved to powered flight in 2005. Got my PPL in 2006 and an instrument rating in 2008. During these years I was still working and was fortunate enough to use flight while traveling for my consultancy business. Nowadays, I only fly for fun in parallel to teaching new pilots in various matters regarding PPL- and IR-theory.

And how did I get into Rotary and IFFR?

My involvement in Rotary goes back to 1996. I am still a member of that same club (RC Louis de Geer) in Norrköping Sweden, my hometown, and have throughout this time been committed to working for The Rotary Foundation. Initially as head of the TRF committee within the club, and later as District Chair for TRF in district 2410, which is a truly international district consisting of the eastern parts of Sweden and the country of Latvia.

I stumbled upon IFFR by chance. One day, I noticed a strange pin on the jacket of one of my fellow club Rotarians. Asked about it and then and there decided to join. But up till then, I had not learned anything about IFFR within Rotary or the local flying community. IFFR really is Rotary’s best kept secret.

How about work and home life?

Professionally I have worked half my life in the service and trade industries. Initially in sales and marketing and later in various managerial roles. I spent the latter half of my working life as an Executive Search consultant and a partner of TRANSEARCH plc – a peculiar company in that it is British but has its head office in Paris, France.

Ingalill is the love of my life. Married to her for 39 years by now. We have two talented daughters, two wonderful son-in-laws and four lively and inventive grandchildren.

And when I’m not flying?

We have a yacht which we sail in the Baltic during summertime, and both of us also enjoy winter sports like skiing.

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