face of Whitney Payne, staff member of Skydive Orange

Staff Spotlight: Whitney Payne

Monday, December 18, 2017

If you’ve come to Skydive Orange, it is likely that you have been greeted by the beaming smile and cheery disposition of Whitney Payne. Here is a chance to get to know a bit more about the person who works magic in manifest and plans top-notch events for the drop zone!

Let’s start with some basics:

headshot of whitney payne

How old are you, where are you from?

I am 26 years young and from Culpeper, VA.

What were you like as a kid and do you have any siblings? 

As a kid, I was very quiet and shy, excelled academically and hated sports! I have two older brothers who I absolutely adore.

What are you looking forward to this year?

I am very excited for all the surprises 2018 has in store for me and for all the events at Skydive Orange. I love event planning and ensuring everyone has a great time! 

So, we know you work at a drop zone, but we want to know:

Do you skydive? 

I do not skydive, I actually wouldn’t skydive if you paid me to believe it or not! Adrenaline rushes and I don’t exactly get along.

How were you introduced to the sport? And how did you get into the skydiving industry?

I started working at Skydive Orange in August of 2013 because I hated my previous job. My boyfriend, Jon Stotts, who was a packer here, told me they were hiring for manifesters – so I applied! Once I started I knew it was a perfect fit. I’ve worked a lot of jobs in my few years and have never experienced an atmosphere quite like the DZ’s. I started doing manifest, then began social media marketing and event planning, and it’s just gotten better and better.

What did you do before you were employed at a skydiving facility? 

Before I began at Skydive Orange I worked at a Credit Union, Culpeper Chamber of Commerce and multiple other customer service positions – all quite soul-sucking.

What is your position with Skydive Orange?

My current position at Skydive Orange is the Marketing Manager but I still do manifest and guest relations as well.

What attracted you to get a job in the skydiving industry?

What initially attracted me to the job was getting out of my old ones but what kept me here is the people. I have never been engulfed in a community that is so caring, genuine and fun. At the end of the day, you don’t have a corporate boss breathing down your neck for more sales – They want to be your friend and have a beer with you around the fire!

What is your favorite part of the sport?

My favorite part of the sport is that everyone is constantly learning and pushing themselves to do better. I also love being the face that tandems come to, to tell me just how amazing their first jump was or how it changed their life.

Are there benefits to being employed in the office?

Being in the office has its perks such as climate control, LOL and getting to meet so many new faces. Even though I could never see myself jumping, I love when tandems or licensed jumpers tell me how much fun they had on their jumps! 

Fast Facts

Favorite Cuisine?

American! Burgers & fries, for sure.

Favorite Junk Food?


Favorite food that you enjoy that most people would consider disgusting? 

Tomato and mayo sandwich

Favorite place you have visited?

Luray Caverns, hands down. It’s so beautiful.

Place you would like to visit?

I would LOVE to go to Ireland!

Pet Peeve:


What you said as a kid: When I grow up, I want to be________


Something about you that few people know about and would be surprised to learn?

I had a bat land on me during the day so I had to get ALLLLLL the rabies shots – now I can wrestle raccoons! 

Best book you have ever read?

The Glass Castle by Jeanette Walls

If you were to write a book what would be the title?

It’s not about the money – Learn to be happy!

What is the most used app on your smartphone?

Tie between Snap Chat & Instagram

Ben Vickers

Radford, VA

The first time you skydive is a tremendous event in your life. And I am so lucky to have found Skydive Orange.

The largest tandem skydiving center near Northern Virginia, Washington D.C. and Maryland.

Tandem Skydiving Student Skydive Orange

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