Photo of H. Lee Rhode III

Lee is a former pilot and holds an MBA and BA in Economics from the Whittemore School of Business & Economics, University of New Hampshire.

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President & CEO

H. Lee Rohde, III

Throughout his career, Lee has worked with a wide range of clients representing them throughout the process of new and pre-owned aircraft acquisitions, providing analysis of their current flight operations, as well as audits and management reviews of both internal and third party flight departments and charter management companies. Additionally, he has managed a number of new aircraft completions, pre-purchase inspections and retrofit projects for various aircraft types. Lee has also managed the exportation and importation of aircraft on and off the United States and various foreign registries. Lee has worked with all the major fractional, membership and jet card programs representing clients in the acquisition, leasing, re-purchase by the program provider and sale or leasing of various fractional shares to third parties.

Lee is a member in good standing of the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA), National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) and the Aircraft Owners and Pilot Association (AOPA). Lee is currently an active Board Member of the National Aircraft Finance Association (NAFA) and member of the Robb Report Corporate Aviation Advisory Board and was a previous member of both the National Aircraft Resale Association (NARA) Associate Member Advisory Council and the Board of Directors.

Lee has held prominent positions within top aviation services companies. Most recently, Lee served as President and COO of Aviation Management Systems, Inc., (2005 – 2013) an aviation consulting and aircraft acquisition firm. Lee was co-founder of Londavia, Inc., (1988 – 2004) which was acquired in 2001 by the Marmon Group becoming part of the AmSafe Aviation group with offices in the United States, United Kingdom, China and Singapore.

Lee served in the United States Air Force where he held top-secret security clearance and achieved the rank of Staff Sergeant before his honorable discharge. Lee is an experienced pilot and holds a MBA and BA in Economics from the University of New Hampshire.

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“Essex Aviation facilitated an end-of-lease process for a large aircraft and assisted us with structuring a subsequent lease extension. The transactions had several challenging issues that required expert counseling and negotiation. The Essex team is friendly, prompt, easy to work with, and most importantly, simply the best at what they do. We couldn’t be happier with the outcome.”

5 Star Rating

Joe Stone, CFO

Sartini Enterprises, Inc.

“Lee and Tom are the dynamic duo you've been looking for. Their collective skills provide exacting coverage on every detail needed when considering an airplane purchase or refurbishment. I worked with them on a lengthy process, from identification of plane, purchase, full refurbishment, staff assignments thru delivery. I was never once disappointed. Perfect personalities for even the pickiest of clients!”

5 Star Rating

Heidi M.

“Knowledgeable. Informed. Competent. Thorough. Practical. Candid. Professional. Responsive. Efficient.”

5 Star Rating

Tony R., CFO

Northeast Based Family Office

“Essex Aviation’s guidance and data analysis was crucial to our successful first CJ3 lease and later our CJ4 purchase. The expertise of Essex allowed us to understand more fully our flight metrics, history, costs and how to match our future aviation needs with available options in a way that would not have been possible on our own.”

5 Star Rating

Alexandra Glazier, President and CEO

New England Donor Services

“Lee, Tom and the team at Essex have worked with us over the years on a variety of fixed wing, rotor and other special projects, performing to superior standards throughout. We initially went through an industry downselect to compete them against their peers and they surfaced as the best fit for us. We continue to be very happy with the relationship.”

5 Star Rating

Mike D.

Northeast Based Family Office

“We had a very positive experience with Essex. We found them to be competent, professional and objective. They dedicated a significant amount of time to providing an extremely insightful evaluation of our aircraft division. The report detailed strengths and weaknesses in our operation, together with constructive recommendations . They interacted very well with the staff and were able to elicit accurate and honest information.”

5 Star Rating

Michael M.

Northeast based Family Office

“Throughout my career as a family office executive, Essex Aviation has been my go to aviation expert. Lee and Tom have guided me through the most complex aircraft acquisition while being able to meet difficult client deadlines. The Essex team has provided key analysis ranging from the mundane, such as the interpretation of the placement of a placard on an aircraft to negotiations relating to an engine care program. Lee and Tom are key partners in all aspects of family office aviation matters.”

5 Star Rating

John Castrucci, Family Office Executive & Founder

Global Family Office Advisors

“I engaged Essex Aviation to prepare an analysis of large cabin aircraft that best met my needs. Their process was comprehensive and thorough. After an exhaustive search of available aircraft, they represented me on the acquisition, negotiation and importation of a long range aircraft and then oversaw a comprehensive customization of the entire plane. Throughout the process, Essex was a knowledgeable, trustworthy and detail oriented partner.”

5 Star Rating

Daniel R.