WOMEN OF AVIATION WORLDWIDE WEEK
Women of Aviation Worldwide Week is an annual global observance during the week of March 8th. It celebrates women’s past and present contributions to the betterment of the air and space industry. The week also promotes aviation opportunities to girls and women.
Notable Pioneering Women in Aviation
Raymonde de la Roche
Raymonde de la Roche (August 22, 1882 – July 18, 1919) was the first woman in the world to receive an airplane pilot’s license. The French actress broke gender barriers to earn herself the title of “Baroness de la Roche.” Wilbur Wright’s 1908 demonstrations of powered flight in Paris inspired her and prompted her determination to fly. In June 1919, de la Roche set two women’s altitude records, one at 15,700 feet, and also the women’s distance record, of 201 miles. Read more here.
Geraldine “Jerrie” Fredritz Mock (November 22, 1925 – September 30, 2014) was the first woman to fly solo around the world. In 1964, Mock flew a single-engine Cessna 180 christened the “Spirit of Columbus” and nicknamed “Charlie.” The trip began March 19, 1964, in Columbus, Ohio, and ended April 17, 1964, in Columbus, Ohio Read more here.
Bessie Coleman (January 26, 1892 – April 30, 1926) earned her pilot’s license in 1921 in France, two years before her more famous contemporary, Amelia Earhart. She got her license in France because American aviation schools denied her entry based on her race and gender. So, she learned French and went to France. On June 15, 1921, Coleman earned her pilot’s license from the highly respected Federation Aeronautique International. Her accomplishment gave her the unique distinction of becoming the first American to earn this international pilot’s license in France. Read more here.
HOW TO OBSERVE #WomenOfAviationWorldwideWeek
- Join – Become a fan of Women of Aviation Worldwide.
- Fly it Forward – Girls can take advantage of “Fly it Forward.” It is an introductory flight for women and girls who have never flown in a small aircraft. The introductory flights are offered exclusively to girls with no prior exposure to flight in a small aircraft. (Prior airline flights are OK).
- Pink Paper Airplane Challenge – The Pink Paper Airplane Challenge is open to anyone regardless of gender. Download the WOAW Pink Paper Plane template from the Women of Aviation Worldwide Week website. On March 8 locally, build a WOAW Pink Paper Plane, take a photo of yourself or someone else with the WOAW Pink Paper Plane, then upload it to the website.
- Follow on Social Media with #WOAW and #womenofaviationworldwideweek
WOMEN OF AVIATION WORLDWIDE WEEK HISTORY
In January 2010, Mireille Goyer, an aviation educator and airline-rated pilot, launched an international grassroots initiative to celebrate the centennial of the first female pilot license worldwide earned by Raymonde de la Roche on March 8, 1910.