I grew up in a small town in southern Alabama, where I attended the only local public high school. I was a late bloomer, but found myself editor of the school paper and a majorette my senior year.
high school I attended Mastin School of Nursing in Mobile, AL. I fell in love
with cardiology, and a fellow classmate (former high school sweetheart). I did the
"traditional thing"--got married (Stutts) and went to work as a Resgistered
Nurse in the Coronary Intensive Care Unit, in Mobile. My husband was an avid--or was
that "rabid"?--hunter, and I found myself with way too much "alone time".
I went back to school (supposedly to finish my nursing degree...) and learned to fly!
Pretty soon I was transporting patients all over the world as the flight nurse in
the back of a Learjet.
Oh, I fell in love with the Learjet, too.....
I left the hospital for a full time career in "aviation medicine" or flight nursing. Things were going pretty well until hurricane Frederick wiped out many of our airplanes. The company went under, and I went looking for work. The job I found was beyond my wildest expections--even though I resisted returning to single engine aircraft after flying Learjets. I went to work for GAMA (General Aviation Manufacturer's Assoc.) in Washington, DC. My job was simple. Fly a high performance single engine aircraft all over the USA and promote learning to fly thru the medium of the press.
What an experience! I was
even honored to be selected as Cosmopolitan magazine's Career Woman of the
Month, Sept. 1982. (It's the very tiny bottom center article.)
The Contact! Learn-to-Fly program ended, and so did another phase of my life-- my marriage. I took my maiden name--Anderson--back, packed up and moved. I landed in Tucson, AZ, with a Demo Pilot position for Gates Learjet, Inc. Talk about dreams coming true!
Alas, my "dream job" was
to be short lived. Between the oil crunch and the poor economy, Gates Learjet
fell on hard times, and I found myself "laid off" 2 1/2 years later.
I went to to work for AIRCOA (Clarion hotels) in Denver flying a Learjet 55. Everything was great for almost 3 years, until the company sold off 51% of the stock, and ended up closing the flight department..... I went looking for work....again.
For a while, I paid the bills by flying Learjets part time and working as a nurse in ICU at Swedish Medical Center part time.
was puchased by Bombardier Aerospace in the spring of 1990.
I was offered the position of Demonstration Pilot in the marketing
flight department. For over 9 years I lived in Kansas--uh, in Oz--flying
all of the current production Learjets, and many of the older models as
well. You can go to my web page DemoWorld
to see some of the pictures from the last few months I worked for Learjet.
I left Bombardier Learjet
to help start a brand new flight department for first time aircraft owners in the
computer business. For 21 months I spent almost every waking hour helping to
build the flight department and the charter business as a senior training Captain
We started the operation in Boca Raton, FL, but moved it to West Palm Beach in the fall of 2000. In January, 2001, I added a Challenger 604 type rating to my credentials in preparation for the delivery of a new aiplane in April. I was not destined to fly the 604 for Wingedfoot. I was "invited to leave" the company by the aircraft owner's wife in March 2001. (ahhh, the whims of the wealthy....I think at last count she's fired over 50 people--mostly for the purpose of boosting her own ego.) Wingedfoot services became owned by DayJets and both closed their doors September 19th, 2008.
Rebounding quickly to the shock of loosing my job, I started my own Contract Pilot Services business: Factory Pilots Plus, Inc. The business has been fairly successful thanks to many friends, colleagues and contacts throughout the aviation community. A year after Factory Pilots Plus, Inc. was launched I started another business--an online resume listing service, Pilots4Rent.com. It's doing pretty well and has acquired a reputation of having the information that operators really need to find the right pilots and flight attendants. Everything considered, I have to say that I am happier running my own business and working for a variety of flight departments. It's almost like being a demo pilot again--without the politics....
Interests (besides work):
Computers have become my avocation these days....and I'm learning about web sites as I go. Scanning and editing photos can kill hours of "free" time that I should be using otherwise.
My 1980 Red
Corvette is still my "baby"--but I don't recommend
that you drive it 2000 miles across the country to move!
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updated October 2008