We attend 30th annual Women in Aviation International Conference

Our Pilot Recruiting team attended the 30th annual Women in Aviation International (WAI) Conference held last week in Long Beach, California.

“The Women in Aviation Conference is always an inspiring and amazing event,” said Pilot Recruiter Venus Ramos. “This year, there were more than 4,300 attendees, and it was great to be able to share our positive growth story with so many of them as well as catch up with some of our ExpressJet alums.”

Venus said that the good word about our E175 fleet growth and pilot hiring plans kept the recruiting team busy throughout the conference.

“We were non-stop from the moment the doors opened until the conference wrapped!”

WAI is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the encouragement and advancement of women in all aviation career fields and interests.

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Two more milestones in our E175 launch

We recently achieved two significant pilot training milestones for the April launch of our new Embraer E175 fleet.

Captain Pat Greene became ExpressJet’s first FAA-certified E175 Aircrew Program Designee (APD). With this designation, Pat may now certify other ExpressJet pilots on the E175 fleet. We’ll have a total of seven E175 APDs to support training efficiency and flexibility through our fleet growth.

In addition, Captain Jorge Rechani became ExpressJet’s first line pilot to earn an E175 type rating. Jorge is among more than 250 ExpressJet line pilots who will be certified to fly the E175.

Thanks, Captain Pat and Captain Jorge for representing us so well in these milestones! We’ll see you flying the E175s soon!

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Ten years since our history-making flight

Ten years ago, on February 12, 2009, Captain Rachelle Jones Kerr, First Officer Stephanie Grant and Flight Attendants Diana Galloway and Robin Rogers landed in our nation’s history books as the first all-female, African-American crew to operate a commercial revenue flight – and it only happened by chance.

Rachelle, Robin and Diana had been flying with a first officer who left the trip early due to illness, and Stephanie was called to fill in.

“I could not believe it at the time,” said Stephanie, describing how she felt as she entered the aircraft and saw her fellow crew members. “We knew that this moment was special, but did not realize the full significance until weeks later when pictures from the flight began circulating on the internet.”

Together with the Organization of Black Airline Pilots (OBAP), the crew confirmed that they were, indeed, the first all-female, African-American flight crew.

The four flew just one round-trip together, from Atlanta to Nashville, Tennessee, and back, but it was enough to permanently mark their place in history.

Today, Stephanie and Robin are based in ORD, Rachelle is a first officer for Delta Air Lines, and Diana has retired from the industry. Stephanie also now uses her experience to encourage other minority women to enter aviation through work with Sisters of the Skies, a non-profit mentorship organization. Although no longer coworkers, the four still stay in touch thanks to the chance bond they formed ten years ago.

“I am proud of our place in history and even more proud to share it with some of the greatest women that I know,” said Stephanie.

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We attend NGPA conference

Our Pilot Recruiting team attended the National Gay Pilots Association (NGPA) Winter Warm-Up conference held over the weekend in Palm Springs, California. The annual event, presented by United Airlines, brings together thousands of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender aviation professionals and enthusiasts – as well as allies – from around the world.

“It was great to return to NGPA this year with the ExpressJet growth story to share,” said Pilot Recruiter Venus Ramos. “We connected with people in all stages of their aviation careers and even had the opportunity to catch up with one of our Airline Pilot Pathway Program (AP3) students. We’re already looking forward to the next NGPA event!” ngpa

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