HeliExperts International works directly with and for its clients to ensure that their projects are based on accepted and fundamentally sound design and regulatory concepts. While HeliExperts well established strategies not only meet and oftentimes exceed proven regulatory and best practice standards, our team’s innovative concepts and oftentimes revolutionary approach provides the out-of-the-box practical alternatives and options required for our client’s to achieve their immediate needs as well as their future goals when no one else can.


Whether your project calls for a corporate, industrial, hospital, public or private heliport, or even an entire heliport system, HeliExperts has your needs and goals fully covered.


HeliExperts does not sell any type of equipment or represent any equipment or aircraft manufacturers, nor do we accept commissions or any other forms of remuneration from suppliers. We work only for you so that you can be assured that our consulting team is objective and unbiased no matter what your needs or the situation.



The roots of HeliExperts International LLC (HEI) can be traced back to 1985 with the formation of Raymond A. Syms and Associates (RAS & A). Richard J. Hodgkins, Ray’s mentor, was a dual rated pilot, in various aviation management and regulatory positions to include being the Director of the Massachusetts Aeronautical Commission. Many of the materials and processes used by RAS & A, later HEI, can trace their roots back to those developed by Richard in his aviation career.


Created in January 2012, HeliExperts International formed from the merger of RAS & A and RJ Alexander Consulting LLC. This merger incorporated the diverse technical capabilities and experience of Rex Alexander into the firm. On 9-30-2017, Rex left HEI to take a position with Uber Technologies as the Head of Aviation Infrastructure. In this new role, Rex will be assisting in the development of future infrastructure and technology to support the next generation of Vertical Take-Off and Landing (VTOL) aircraft.


In 2017, HEI welcomed Jimmy Spearman, Retired FAA Executive with over 21 years in the FAA. Jimmy started in the FAA as an Aviation Safety Inspector, having since advanced to a high-level position in the FAA’s Flight Standards division. This occurred after an extensive and varied military and commercial aviation career spanning over 21 years.


Collectively, the current HeliExperts team benefits from the experiences of more than 150+ combined years of highly specialized aviation, helicopter and heliport expertise and experience in FAA, military, corporate, offshore, and air medical operations with over 75 combined years in aeronautical consulting, safety, heliport development, education, and litigation support.


Both founding HEI members and Jimmy Spearman are active participants and contributors to the aviation and helicopter industries in multiple arenas of governmental rule making, regulatory policy authoring, aviation infrastructure design, technical research, education and training, safety initiatives and risk mitigation strategies.


HeliExperts team members have donated thousands of hours to and actively collaborate with; the Federal Aviation Administration, National Fire Protection Association, National Transportation and Safety Board, Transportation Safety Institute as well as numerous Aviation, Safety and Trade Organization, Groups and Associations. Due to these continuing efforts to promote helicopter safety, many of the design and safety enhancements that HeliExperts have initiated and promoted on behalf of its clients over the years have become standards within the code and best practice arenas.


Both founding members were instrumental in assisting the Transportation Safety Institute in Oklahoma City in developing the current Heliport Evaluation Training Course used to train FAA Inspectors throughout the U.S. on heliport evaluation practices and procedures. While still with the FAA Jimmy was one of the developers of that course and collaborated with HEI on its development. Jimmy has taught and is continuing to teach that course to numerous FAA inspectors since its inception.



•Master planned and/or designed 750+ heliports

•Inspected, audited, inventoried and evaluated 3,000+ heliports

•Exceptional heliport regulatory approval rate

•100% heliport approval rate from all FAA, State and Fire Marshall authorities.

•100% success rate in litigation support dealing with helicopters and heliports



Raymond A. Syms:

Ray-1web2Mr. Syms Possesses more than 45 years of military, general and commercial aviation experience as a pilot, instructor pilot, aviation manager, heliport developer, and aviation expert. Syms has qualified as an unchallenged aviation expert in federal, state and local courts aviation liability cases in addition to official hearings and other regulatory proceedings. Additionally, Syms is the designer and primary author of the HAI Heliport/Vertiport Development Guide (a publication by the Helicopter Association International) and has spent more than 30 years serving on FAA and NFPA (National Fire Protection Association) committees that assist with authoring the FAA Heliport and Vertiport Design Advisory Circulars (the FAA’s design recommendations for all heliports) and develop the NFPA Standards for Heliports (fire protection and safety standards for heliports). Syms is the current chair of the NFPA 418 Committee, Standard for Heliports.

CV for Raymond A. Syms (click to download pdf)

James P. Spearman, III:

Rex-5web213,000-hour ATP Rated Helicopter and Airplane pilot with over 44 years of industry and leadership experience in the military, corporate and US Government arena. Expensive background as Captain/Pilot in command, Medevac Pilot, Instructor, Check Airman, Evaluator, FAA Inspector and Navaids Inspection Pilot and Facility Manager. Jim has contributed many hours as ex-offico to NFPA, HAI and other organizations as well as participating in various FAA projects. Jim has provided valuable insight to heliport proponents, helicopter operators and major international airports throughout the country on Federal / State, NFPA, Environmental and FAR part 77/157 airport/heliport design requirements. With his extensive background in aircraft operations, airport and heliport operations and communicating skills working across Federal / Industry lines of business he brings a significant array of operating experience to our team.

CV for James P. Spearman (click to download pdf)

Rex Alexander:


Rex Alexander is a 40-year helicopter and fixed operations and safety management veteran. He is a dual-rated pilot, airframe & powerplant technician, and aviation entrepreneur where his career spans military, commercial and general aviation safety industries. Rex works closely with the International Helicopter Safety Team (IHST) and the U.S. Helicopter Safety Team (USHST) in advancing helicopter safety and often functions as a primary liaison to the FAA, DOT, and NTSB on infrastructure matters. He instructs heliport safety and serves on the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA)-418, Standard for Heliports committee. Rex currently serves as the primary infrastructure liaison for the Vertical Flight Society (VFS), representing their members’ interests directly with the FAA, ICAO, and the vertical flight community as a whole. A former HEMS pilot, Rex has served as a board member and past president of the National EMS Pilots Associating (NEMSPA) and the Indiana Association of Air Medical Services (INAAMS).

CV for Rex Alexander (click to download pdf)