In recognition of Woman’s History Month, I am sharing my mother Judy Redshaw’s amazing story regarding her career change.
In the early 1970s my mother Judy was a high school teacher in the New Orleans area teaching business courses and leading the business department of her school. At that time, she was in her late 30s and a mother of three. She had always wanted to try flying. She did try it one weekend and loved it. In her style, she jumped in with gusto and in five years she had received her pilot’s license, her instrument rating and then her commercial rating, all while working full time and advancing in her career. By the 1980s she was a high school Vice Principal, and it was then she made the next logical step to begin teaching flying, wherein she obtained her instructors’ rating and later her twin engine rating. In the mid 1980s she made the leap and took a full time flight instructor job at Flight Safety in Wichita, and not too long after that she was recruited work at Boeing in Seattle to help with the introduction of the 747–400. There she helped pioneer advances in crew resource management and the associated training. She was on the ground floor of the 777 flight training curriculum development and traveled the world training flight crews in simulators. The customer’s loved her. She was a natural teacher. She retired from Boeing in the 1990s, and now lives in south Mississippi.
At the time I took all this for granted as typical, but it’s exceptional.