Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University

Charlotte County Public Schools, Florida

Campus Locations

  • Charlotte High School - Punta Gorda, FL
  • Lemon Bay High School - Englewood, FL
  • Port Charlotte High School - Port Charlotte, FL
  • Charlotte Technical Center - Punta Gorda, FL

Karen Candiani, Director


Professor Candiani joined the Embry-Riddle faculty in 2008, following a 25-year career in telecommunications and software systems working for various Bell System Companies including Western Electric Co., Bell Communications Research and Lucent Technologies. Her telecommunications career included software design and development, quality assurance, customer support, system engineering and project management for wireline and wireless telephony technologies. After working in the private sector, she worked for the New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) in the Division of Aeronautics and Division of Information Technology.

Professor Candiani is both a Commercial Pilot for hot air balloons and a Private Pilot for single engine airplanes with Instrument privileges. Interested in many aspects of aviation, she has served as a chapter President of the Experimental Aviation Association, and she and her husband, Don, spent 5 years building an RV-8 aircraft in the basement of their house. They also own a Balloonport and are partners in a public airport in New Jersey.

From the beginning of her aeronautical career, Professor Candiani has had a passion for aviation education, particularly for students and first-time fliers. It was this passion, developed as a ballooning instructor, which led her to Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. Recently, she also has begun to speak and write to build a closer linkage between the general aviation community and the world of aerospace education.

MS, Computer Science, New Jersey Institute of Technology
BS, Mathematics, Montclair State College