The Honourable Company of Air Pilots incorporating Air Navigators

The Australian Bicentennial Award


Awarded as an ongoing commemoration of the Australian Bi-Centenary, to recognise an outstanding individual contribution to Australian aviation.


2019 awarded to:  Nathan Higgins


In September 1993 Nathan Higgins established Advanced Flight Theory, a Registered Training Organisation (RTO) and specialist aviation theory school, based at the Sunshine Coast Airport, Queensland. This organisation has grown and been successful over some 25 years.

During that time, Advanced Flight Theory has established a reputation for providing the highest quality, fully accredited Airline Transport Pilot Licence (ATPL) and non accredited Commercial Pilot Licence (CPL) theory courses and overseas licence conversions to aeroplane and helicopter pilots from all over Australia, the South Pacific region and around the world.

Rob Dicker, the Chairman of the Aviation Careers and Education Committee for the Australian Region of the Honourable Company of Air Pilots has stated that, from his own personal interactions with aspiring professional pilots through his role as Chairman and as a Qualified Flying Instructor, he can personally attest to this reputation. When considering the best course for achieving their ATPL subjects, students invariably mention Advanced Flight Theory. Indeed, Rob believes that the high regard in which Nathan Higgins and Advanced Flight Theory are held is a major reason for the success of the Honourable Company’s scholarship program over the last few years.

Since establishing Advanced Flight Theory Nathan has been personally responsible for the tuition of more than 3000 students for their Airline Transport Pilot Licence subjects, most of whom have gone on to achieve their ATPL. At the same time, Advanced Flight Theory has achieved pass rates for their students that are the best in Australia and well above the National average. Nathan is also a Qantas approved ATPL theory provider.

Many of Nathan’s students now sit in the cockpits of Australian and overseas airlines and one could speculate as to how these positions might have been filled without his teaching expertise.

The above facts demonstrate that Nathan Higgins and his company, Advanced Flight Theory, have achieved technical excellence in the delivery of their ATPL course as well as an outstanding individual contribution to Australian Aviation on Nathan’s part.  In addition, Nathan has donated an ATPL course each year since 2016 as part of the Australian Region’s scholarship program that, at current rates, amounts to a total of just under $20,000.

For his significant contribution to the technical excellence in the delivery of ATPL and CPL theory training and making an outstanding individual contribution to Australian Aviation, Nathan Higgins is awarded for the Australian Bi-Centennial Award.


Previous Winners:

1987/88 Captain T Thom

1988/89 Keith Robey MBE

1989/90 Wing Commander K C Andrews

1990/91 Captain J K Davenport

1991/92 Group Captain J W C Baker RAF

1992/93 A J (John) Douglas Esq

1993/94 Captain A Wickes

1994/95 John R Colwell Esq

1995 Mrs Senja Raymond Robey

1996/97 Glenn Elms Esq

1997/98 Captain John W Kessey

1998/99 Langley Kidby

1999/2000 Captain Philip Davenport

2000/01 Stephen Ingham

2001/02 Allana Corbin

2003/04 Captain Peter James Raven

  2005  Not Awarded

2005/06 Bill Bristow

2006/07 David H Lowy

2007/08 Not Awarded

2008/09 Peter Nottage

2009/10 Group Captain Dr Robert Lee

  2011  Not Awarded

2011/12 Dr Carol Lesley Durkin PhD LLM BA DipSocStud

2012/13 Christopher Sperou

2013/14 Captain Patrick Stuart Murray

2014/15 Harry Schneider

2016  Matt Hall

2017  Bastiaan Scheffers

2018  Wing Commander Ian Mallett DFC RAAF(retd)

2019  Nathan Higgins