About Epic Flight Academy

About our Flight School

Welcome to Epic Flight Academy!

Our mission is to provide an unparalleled pathway to achieving professional pilot dreams through innovative flight education and technologically-advanced aviation resources.

Our Story
Established in 1999, Epic Flight Academy opened it’s doors originally as Epic Aviation, offering both FAA pilot training and FBO services. CEO Danny Perna shifted the focus solely to flight training in 2002, maintaining consistent growth through forward thinking and an innovative approach to the aviation market. Leading the industry, Epic was one of the first flight schools to offer standardized glass-cockpit aircraft in 2005, which allowed students to train with instrumentation similar to the technology utilized by the airlines.

Continuing to expand the worldwide network of safe, talented pilots, the flight school developed an expedited Professional Pilot Pathway, minimizing both course cost and time for aspiring airline pilots. Receiving Cessna’s “Flight Training Excellence” award and recognized as an authorized Cessna Service Center to for high quality maintenance, Epic Flight Academy has been the top choice for students from over 80 countries across the globe. Proudly partnering with a number of airlines to ensure our students have the knowledge and connections to achieve their career goals, our thousands of successful aviators are serving over 300 airlines worldwide.

Our Leaders
Danny Perna, CEO – A third generation aviator, Danny’s grandfather, Anthony Perna, began as a Flight Instructor in a B17, completing his career as a Colonel in the US Air Force. Tony Perna, Danny’s father, worked directly and indirectly for Cessna Aircraft for 35 years developing international aircraft sales. Danny started Epic Aviation in 1999 with one Cessna 152 and has built the operation into an international full-service FBO and Flight Academy. Danny Perna is a unique business owner, not only being the founder of the operation, he also holds a FAA Multi-Engine Commercial, and is a Certified Flight Instructor and Authorized Maintenance Inspector.

Judith Rice, Private Pilot Ground School Instructor – With a lifelong passion for aviation and aerospace technology, and well as sixteen years in formal education, Judith entered the field of aerospace education. She has enjoys traveling, and has visited 100+ countries and all of the United States. In 2015, she successfully piloted a Citation Mustang around the world visiting over 10,000 students in 35 countries. She is an instrument rated, commercial, multi-engine, Citation type-rated pilot, advance ground instructor, certified flight instructor and has logged over 3,000 hours in numerous aircraft. Other than flying, Judith’s favorite way to spend her time is to assist Epic Flight Academy students in reaching their goals, and she is proud to be part of the Epic family.

Cindy Lovell, Director of Education – Dr. Lovell holds a B.A. and M.A. from Stetson University and a Ph.D. from the University of Iowa. Her areas of expertise include gifted education, English as a second language, and Mark Twain. She has held tenured positions at Stetson University and Quincy University and served as Executive Director at the Mark Twain Boyhood Home & Museum in Hannibal, MO and the Mark Twain House & Museum in Hartford, CT. Cindy believes in following your bliss, which is why she’s at Epic today. This is where she learned to fly, and she is thrilled to be back in Florida working with other students who are pursuing their passion. In addition to teaching and overseeing operations at the School of Imagination for students in grades 8-12, Cindy also works with Epic’s flight instructors to assist with foreign students that are perfecting their aviation English.