New company will have worldwide impact
June 02, 2011A new aerospace company launched in Grosse Pointe Farms will help bring jobs to the hometown of owner Francis Louis Charbonneau Jr.
A Grosse Pointe South graduate, Charbonneau went on to earn a bachelor's degree in history and a master's degree in international business and marketing from Wayne State University. He is a student at the University of Michigan, Dearborn, where he is a candidate for degrees in physics and French.
For the past 10 years, Charbonneau has worked in the automotive and aerospace industries in sales engineering and project management.
Charbonneau will serve as owner, president and CEO of his new company, Aerospace Consultants International LLC.
The company will help aerospace companies upgrade their certification and credentials to the AS9100 Revision C requirements which go into effect July 1, 2012.
All aerospace companies and suppliers globally will have to comply with the new guidelines, which dictate stringent requirements and quality policies both in manufacturing and documentation procedures.
Charbonneau's family is from Montreal, Quebec, Canada, where he will also do business. He credits Grosse Pointe Farms attorney Ted Everingham with preparing all the documents for his visa to open an office there. Charbonneau will have to test and agree to several stipulations in order to expand there.
"We'd offer similar services in Canada, with autdits and certificates provided in both French and English," Charbonneau said. "Ted's a great guy and does a wonderful job for me. It's exciting for me to help other companies right here stay competitive.
"I chose to start here because I love this area and I haven't given up. I will hire people who will stay here. We're here because Michigan is on the rebound. I want to be part of the solution."
Charbonneau said his work ethic comes from his father, who taught him to always be prepared.
"I learned to be ready at all times. It helps me and in turn I enjoy helping others be prepared. That's what this company will do. It will allow this area to stay competitive."
Charbonneau, upbeat and excited about his new company, is happy to slow down and talk about his family.
His wife, Laura, a University Liggett graduate, is director of corporate and foundation giving for the Beaumont Foundation in Royal Oak.
He said change - in the form of different jobs, plenty of school work and the passing of his father in 2003 and father-in-law in 2007, gave him direction to not only start his new business, but enjoy the time he spends with his daughters, Elise and Sarah.
The family also has a 41-pound standard schnauzer named Russell.
"He's a riot, as are the kids," Charbonneau said smiling.
Elise, a first-grade student, wants to help with the artwork for dad's new company. Sarah, a fifth grader, wants to be in marketing.
"They will help right away," Charbonneau said. "I love spending my spare time with them. We enjoy making pizzas and riding bikes."
Charbonneau also spends a couple hours each day keeping up on his French in anticipation of his global outreach with ACI.
"I also studied classical piano for 20 years," he said. "I have a lot of energy and we'll make this work. I don't mind putting in an 18-hour day if it helps companies compete and keeps jobs here.
"New opportunities will be abundant and I can't wait to get started.
For more information about ACI, visit aciaerocert.com.