California flight instructor does her part to boost female pilots

03/5/2009 | Daily Sound (Santa Barbara, Calif.)

In a 10-year career as a flight instructor in Santa Barbara, Calif., 40-year-old Andrea Read has watched many of her students go on to fly for commercial airlines. But despite having some 14,000 hours of flight time under her belt, Read says she has no desire to fly the "heavy metal." She says her company, Spitfire Aviation, has "changed the face of aviation in Santa Barbara" with a student roster that is 15% female. And despite the recession, Read has seen little impact at her flight school or her maintenance operations. "This is not something they want to give up," she says of her students. "For a lot of these people, this is their dream."

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Daily Sound (Santa Barbara, Calif.)

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