From the early beginnings of aviation, women have taken their place in the cockpit along with men to achieve significant goals and make their mark in the history of aviation.
Seeing a value in interactive networking, a select group of women aviators organized and chartered the Women’s Aeronautical Association in June 1928. The organization is one of the oldest women’s organizations in the state of Kansas. Some of the original charter members include: Mrs. Olive Ann Beech, Mrs. Clyde Cessna, Mrs. Schuyler Jones, Mrs. June Mayer, Mrs. Marcellus Murdock, Mrs. Victor Murdock, Mrs. Wm. Snook Sr., Mrs. L.C. Stearman and Mrs. Lillian Whipple, just to name a few.
With over 65 past presidents in its history, 14 were able to attend the 1998 Installation Dinner and 70th Birthday Party at Wichita’s Marriott Hotel. Highlights of WAA’s accomplishments are: Established an aeronautical book shelf at the Wichita City Library, Furnished the Ladies Lounge in the Administration Building at the old Municipal Airport, Staffed War Bond and Stamp Booths at Kress Store, Served at Union Station Canteen, as well as many other projects.
Currently WAA sponsors a scholarship in Aeronautical Engineering at Wichita State University, frequently donates aeronautical books to WSU, Wichita Public Library, and the Kansas Aviation Museum. Another early project was starting a model airplane museum at the airport. This exhibit of over 100 Wichita built aircraft can currently be seen at the Kansas Aviation Museum.
WAA members must have a vested interest in Wichita aviation. Many members, who work at Boeing, Cessna, Learjet and Raytheon, are pilots themselves, or have spouses connected with the aviation industry. WAA is proud to have five Honorary Members: Mrs. Marcelline Bowery, Mrs. Helen Dorman, Mrs. Marjorie French, Mrs. Alfreda Vail and Mrs. Velma Wallace.
For more information on joining Women’s Aeronautical Association and it’s current philanthropies, contact Mary Crawshaw, President, at 316-686-1678.