Elsie MacGill Awards

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Level Flight is proud to be a sponsor for the Northern Lights Aero Foundation's 2021 Elsie MacGill Awards. Why are we sponsoring? Two reasons:

  1. Once again our very own SME for Human Factors, Stacey Paquette Jackson, is being recognized for her hard work and dedication to the aviation industry. Stacey is the 2020 recipient of the Flight Operations Award and will be presented with it at this year's gala. 
  2. We are dedicated to supporting women in aviation by contributing to organizations that open doors and break down barriers for women who wish to pursue a career in aviation. Making opportunities more accessible will only serve to strengthen our industry and ensure its sustainability.

Read more about the Northern Lights Aero Foundation, Stacey Jackson, and Elsie MacGill below.

Northern Lights Aero Foundation

By recognizing and celebrating accomplished women, the Northern Lights Aero Foundation’s mission is to attract women and inspire them to succeed in careers in aviation and aerospace. We will encourage those ambitions by engaging in outreach, facilitating mentorships, providing scholarship opportunities, and championing the values of diversity and inclusion. The Northern Lights Aero Foundation's annual “Elsie” award honours Canadian women who have made outstanding contributions to aviation and aerospace. Named after aviation pioneer and human rights advocate Elsie Gregory MacGill, the award recognizes eight outstanding women across seven categories: business, education, engineering, flight operations, government, trailblazer, and rising star. “Our goal is to bring more recognition to women working in the world of aviation and aerospace in Canada,” says Kathleen Lang, President of the Northern Lights Aero Foundation. “This year’s recipients are an incredible line-up of role models for the next generation of women in these industries. 

Flight Operations Award

Stacey Jackson: With over 20 years of experience in the aviation industry, Stacey has done mountainous, glider, and medevac flying and captained a Dash-7 for the United Nations in the Middle East and Africa. She received an Honours Diploma in Aviation Flight Technology from Sault College, a Bachelor of Science in Aeronautics, Summa Cum Laude, and a Master of Science in Aeronautics, specializing in human factors and aircraft accident investigation, at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. Stacey is a member of the International Society of Air Safety Investigators (ISASI) and is a current aircraft accident investigator with the Air Line Pilots Association, representing WestJet Airlines, where she operates a B737NG. She is the Canadian representative of the International Federation of Airline Pilot’s Association’s Female Pilot’s Working Group, focusing on issues that affect female airline pilots globally.

Elsie Gregory MacGill

Vancouver-born Elsie Gregory MacGill was the first Canadian woman to graduate with a degree in electrical engineering, the first woman in North America with an advanced degree in aeronautics, and the world’s first woman to become an aircraft designer.  Elsie designed, oversaw production, and was aboard the test flight of the Maple Leaf Trainer II.  She was nicknamed “Queen of the Hurricanes” as she enabled mass production of the Hawker Hurricane in Canada during World War II and designed a series of modifications including de-icing and skis to equip the plane for cold weather flying. Elsie served on aeronautical research and regulatory committees for the National Research Council and the United Nations. She was later appointed to the Canadian Royal Commission on the Status of Women and inducted into the Order of Canada. Elsie contracted polio at the age of 24 and walked using canes, so she was unable to fulfill her dream of a pilot’s licence. However, from the rear seat of the Maple Leaf Trainer and for thousands of hours hovering over her engineering drafting table, Elsie flew.

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