A McKinleyville Coast Guard unit highlighted their first all-female helicopter crew in celebration of Women’s History Month on Saturday.
According to Women In Aviation International, “while the amount of women in the U.S. Aviation Field is still small with women only representing about seven percent of the total pilot population, the number of women involved is steadily increasing and women are represented in nearly every aviation occupation today.”
Coast Guard Sector Humboldt Bay was able to achieve an aircrew consisting solely of women due to an increase of female Coast Guardsmen at the unit.
“The Coast Guard is striving to increase the number of women in the organization overall, not only in aviation,” said Lt. Audra Forteza, a Sector Humboldt Bayaircraft commander. “It’s wonderful that our small unit has enough females that we can show young women in the community that they do have these kind of opportunities and hopefully we can inspire them to pursue their career dreams and grow up to be whatever they want to be.”
Sector Humboldt Bay’s area of responsibility consists of 250 miles of rugged coastline from the Mendocino-Sonoma County line north to the California-Oregon border.