This discussion includes the views of three airline pilots/cofounders of the Sisters of the Skies a.k.a. Black Butterflies Facebook page: Stephanie Mitchell-Smith Gulley, Kim McCommon & Tomica Adams. Most members of this group are also affiliated with the OBAP-Organization of Black Aerospace Professionals; Tuskegee Airmen International; and the Bessie Coleman Aerospace Legacy. The group was established to give female aviators of color--including African Americans, Latinos, Hispanics, Indian, etc.--a place to share accomplishments, vent frustrations and generally unite those who make up a very small slice of the pilot demographic pie. While they reach back to honor those who helped to pave the way for them, so do they strive to pay-it-forward by offering encouragement to those who follow.
As a foster child, Melany Rosales had little hope of finding wherewithal for a higher education. A high-school aviation program and one dedicated mentor changed all of that for her. And Melany didn't forget it. As co-founder of Beacon For Teens (www.beacon14s.org) in Ft. Lauderdale, FL, Melany now pays it forward by exposing low-income, at-risk foster children to the world of aviation. When funding for the organization was tight, Melany partnered with Daniel Valladares' Aviation Life Clothing (www.aviationlifeclothing.com) and helped grow it into a funding vehicle for Beacon For Teens.
Erika Armstrong, author of "A Chick in the Cockpit", shares her experiences as an airline pilot and, perhaps more importantly, how she was forced to draw on the strengths developed in that career to manage the unexpected turbulence in her personal life.
Moriah Graham shares the story of her journey to becoming the first African-American Air-Force JROTC cadet to earn a private pilot's license in the state of Delaware. That she persevered through adversity where other's might have quit, serves as an inspiration to young people everywhere. Every young girl who has visions of airplanes dancing in her head will be motivated by Moriah's determination.
Around the same time Emily Howell was working her way into becoming the first female airline pilot in the U.S., Tag Akesheh was breaking similar barriers in Jordan. Her trials and tribulations would have made quitters of many...but Tag endured. Listen to her inspiring story of fortitude and learn from her advice.
Is flight instructing a viable career option...or merely a stepping stone to other pilot positions? What might be done to generate more respect--and income--for the professional flight instructor. Lara Gaerte, instructor at Century Aviation at DeKalb County Airport in Auburn Indiana, gives her candid opinion, as well as sharing helpful instructing tips garnered in her many years of instructing.
If you've ever dreamed of becoming a Bush Pilot, you won't want to miss this interview with Heather Ford as she tells her amazing story about flying the Australian Outback.
In this inaugural episode retired corporate pilot, Karen Hawkins, interviews current corporate pilot Wendy Bradbury-Paver. Learn about the joys and pitfalls of women in corporate aviation, what has changed in twenty years...and what has not. Hear how one woman deals with the gender issues encountered and how she balances career and family life.