Careers In Aviation: 5 Black Pilots and Professionals Reveal What African Americans Need to Know

There are a wealth of opportunities
available in the aviation industry. Five insiders explain what it takes
to advance in a career above the clouds. – todd williams


Stephanie Grant
First Officer
Atlantic Southeast Airlines

“You have to want to do it like nothing else. You have to work hard,
study and get a mentor. There are black female pilots and [black] male
pilots. Grab one of us and we’ll walk you through the steps of becoming
a commercial pilot. Flying is a skill, so the more you do it the better
you are at it. We’re trained and we get better everyday.”


James Gordon
Captain, UPS
President, Organization of Black Airline Pilots

“As a pilot, you’ve got to be willing to communicate. You can’t be too
thin-skinned, and you have to be able to take things light-heartedly.
It’s a very serious profession — but there is some competition [also].
Competition is healthy … I’ve found that it’s caused me to excel to a
greater level then I would have been able to [otherwise.]”


Robin Rogers
Flight Attendant
Atlantic Southeast Airlines

“It’s a very flexible career, [it’s] promising and fulfilling. You must
be open-minded and always be professional. Understand that every day
will be different … but every day isn’t always going to be easy.”


Ernie Taylor
First Officer
Delta Airlines

“Being an airline pilot, we enjoy what we’re doing and we want to give
them an opportunity to do the same thing. You can get your pilot’s
license almost at the same time you get your driver’s license. It’s not
impossible to do, and you learn the [basics] in high school — math and
science. The key to being successful is preparation.”


Diana Galloway
Flight Attendant
Atlantic Southeast Airlines

“We take many flights and meet lots of people. Every flight is a
different experience. It does allow me time with my family and friends.
For anyone aspiring to be a flight attendant — it’s excellent, but you
must stay focused. You apply with an airline and go through an intense
interview process which leads to training that lasts about a month.”

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