Book review: Latinas in Aviation

Latinas in Aviation: Stories of passion, power, and breaking into the aviation industry by Olga Esther Nevarez Custodio

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Only six percent of pilots are women, but after reading Jacqueline’s little book, Latinas in Aviation, I have a feeling that number will change very soon, and very much upward. A compilation of women in cockpits, as mechanics, as air traffic controllers, and filling about every other role in aviation, this book should serve as an inspiration for any young person, particularly a young Latina.

Ms Ruiz cites such aviation luminaries as Graciela Tiscareño-Sato, pilot of an Air Force KC-135 refueling aircraft, Jacqueline Pulido, first woman pilot at Volaris Airlines, Lizbeth Alvorado with ATC at O’Hare International, Amanda Grace Colón Nuñez A&P mechanic and accident investigator.

The women featured in this book have something in common besides their gender. They all have a desire to be part of aviation, and they’ve all defied a convention of some kind to make that dream a reality. A number of them are fulfilling a parent’s dream vicariously by flying. Another thing many of them share is that they had a mentor, someone who believed in them even when they did not.

Reading of the obstacles many of them faced, disbelief that they’re pilots, doubt about their abilities, comments and harassment from male pilots and even criticisms from other women in some cases, heightens these womens’ accomplishments. For any young women wishing to fly, especially a latina, this book is filled with role models. It’s time to change that six percent number, and move it to 50%. Querer es poder indeed. Latinas in Aviation: Stories of passion, power, and breaking into the aviation industry

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