Black Female Pilot, Air Canada

Air Canada’s First Black Female Pilot Takes Flight

Air Canada is celebrating a historic moment in diversity as Zoey Williams becomes its first Black female pilot.

Air Canada has introduced its first Black female pilot.

Zoey Williams was always next-in-line to extend her family’s legacy in piloting, as her father, Orett, was a longtime captain for Air Canada. According to BNN, her father flew the Boeing 777 aircraft throughout her childhood, with its magnitude captivating Williams as a young girl. However, before she could navigate the bigger planes, she had to conquer her fear of the smaller ones.

Luckily, with time and resilience, Williams earned her first pilot’s license at the age of 16. However, her studies were not over yet. She spent the next three years acquiring an advanced diploma in aviation flight management and a bachelor’s in aeronautics and aviation management. Before she turned 20, Williams was a certified flight instructor.

Her work to become a Boeing 777 captain like her father led her to receive her MBA in aviation and international business, alongside previous stints as a pilot for Sky Regional Airlines and Air Transat.

Williams is now the face of Air Canada on its promotional materials. The 27-year-old pilot is celebrated throughout her industry. She was also a part of Elevate Aviation’s 2023 Women of Inspire and was named one of the “Top 20 Under 40” for Wings Magazine.

Black pilots are still a rarity for airlines. In the U.S., they only represent 3.4% of the profession as of 2023, per the Federal Aviation Association. Air Canada pilots only employ 30 Black pilots, with 7 as captains, as reported by New Canadian Media.

“If you have a burning desire to do something, don’t bury it. Keep your focus, build your networks, share your goals and show your passion in everything you do. That’s how you can end up doing things you love day in and day out,” Williams said.

The goal-getter now has her sights set on releasing her upcoming book, Go Where You Belong, to inspire others to reach beyond what they could ever imagine.

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