Blue Line

News
RCMP special constable helicopter pilot wins Northern Lights 2019 Elsie award


May 29, 2019
By Staff
Special Constable Kathy Stewart, helicopter pilot, was one of two women in her 17-student class of helicopter pilot training. Pilots she had sought advice from in the heavily male-dominated industry thought that her aspirations were humorous and doomed to failure. Photo: Alberta RCMP

The Northern Lights Aero Foundation announced the 2019 winners of its 11th annual Elsie MacGill award program on Monday, honouring Canadian women who have made outstanding contributions to aviation and aerospace, and one of the winners is a RCMP special constable helicopter pilot.

“Our goal is to bring more recognition to women doing incredible work in aviation and aerospace in Canada,” said Joy Parker Blackwood, president of the Northern Lights Aero Foundation. “This year’s winners are all role models for the next generation of women in these industries.”

Named after aviation pioneer and human rights advocate Elsie MacGill, the award recognizes eight women across seven categories: business, education, engineering, flight operations, government, pioneer and rising star.

Kathrine Stewart, a regular member special constable helicopter pilot with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, is the 2019 award winner in government. She provides search and rescue, mountain radio repeater access, aerial surveillance, border security, and pursuits and interception support to frontline RCMP members throughout Alberta, Saskatchewan and the Northwest Territories. Her career has ranged from forest fire fighting, wildlife management to diamond exploration, seismic exploration and work in the Arctic. She has over 13,000 flight hours and is endorsed on 8 helicopter types.

Alberta RCMP also celebrated Stewart as part of its 2019 International Women’s Day event.

“Special Constable Kathy Stewart, helicopter pilot, was one of two women in her 17-student class of helicopter pilot training,” a news release from the RCMP reads. “Pilots she had sought advice from in the heavily male-dominated industry thought that her aspirations were humorous and doomed to failure.”

This news originally appeared on the Wings Canada website, a fellow Annex Business Media publication.