Happy November from the NGPA , and welcome to another edition of ON THE FLY! Our organization is taking off into another month, and here are some of the things we wanted to share with you:
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Greetings NGPA Family, and welcome to another edition of our ON THE FLY  newsletter. November is upon us, and we know what that means; it's officially the holiday season. With that comes all sorts of gatherings with family, friends, and coworkers. This year will undoubtedly be a bit more merry than last, as so many of these gatherings are back in person instead of through our computer screens. Family and friend traditions put on hold last year are starting to be part of our holiday equations again. I hope you all enjoy these reunions with those you hold dear to you.

Dropping all fear of sounding cliché, I wish to share something I am genuinely thankful for this holiday season. The people I work with day in and day out to make NGPA the organization it is are certainly not thanked enough for their efforts. So, let me say it now, loud and clear- THANK YOU. Thank you for your selfless volunteerism, which makes NGPA shine as an LGBTQ+ aviation non-profit organization. The work you all do to grow and enrich NGPA is beyond admirable. I know I don't say it enough, and I will strive to be better at this but know just how much I appreciate you all.

As an organization that runs predominately on the selfless work of our volunteers, it is often shocking to our external partners that we don't have a full-time staff of 20+ people running our day-to-day operations and flagship events. They are amazed to hear that volunteers within NGPA drive our organization's impact across the communities we serve. This stunning fact is what draws our sponsors and partners closer to NGPA. They are endeared by the passion our volunteers, leaders, and members share and are eager to push their respective companies and organizations to support NGPA's causes more and more. 

We all know this world could use some more kindness, so try to implore your heart over the next few weeks in all areas of your day. Give some extra cheerful hellos to folks you interact with. Be sure to thank those who help make your day or life easier. Be open to meeting someone new and even brightening the day of a stranger. Embrace this holiday season as a time to be thankful for what you have in your life, who you have in your life, and the impact you have in the lives of others. Thank you to all our NGPA leaders, volunteers, and members. You all give me the energy to lead our organization, and I strive every day to make you all proud. 

Happy Holidays NGPA Family! I look forward to seeing you all again soon!

In November of 2020, I sent 270 Christmas cards. Seventy went to the old veterans home here in Phoenix. Via my church. You enter any information of your military service or  family connection to the service. I make stickers with my dates of service, MOS, and rank. Signed Sgt. Jim. The Vets each get cards. Many have outlived their friends! 

Another 100 or so go to friends here in The Village where I now reside. I can’t send every one of the 900 residents a card, so I rotate annually. We have an internal mail system, so I can use decorative labels; no stamps required.

It’s the final 100 that are really more than a Christmas greeting. Those go to the aviation family that I have shared for 60 + years. Pilots and friends who helped me along my path to a safe and rewarding career. The ones who I worked for and who worked for me over the years. The list dwindles each year as we age. W. C. Fields once said, “I could never remember the name of the woman who taught me how to drink, I always meant to write and thank her!” I was fortunate to have the opportunity to thank some folks who trained me, shared their wisdom and experience. I continue to correspond with some, at least once a year.

Examples? Charley Mann soloed me in 1959. He is retired from NWA and lives here in AZ. He gets a nice card! Owen Parry hired me in 1961 to wash airplanes and answer the phone. He signed me off for my Commercial, later hired me as CFI. He lives in California and we talk several times a year.  Ron Majors who did my Multi training and then hired me and Vern Turek who spent 21 days at American Academy teaching me to fly the first Citation (plus  some fantastic advice on flying safely to retirement) have both gone west. I still send cards to the families.

Now, as my friend from Cessna, Roger Sharp, would say, “What’s your point?” Well, I send dozens of cards to pilots who we trained, or hired. They work for airlines, corporations, or the government. If I was still flying for a living, you’d call this “networking”. I make an effort to stay in touch. I recommend you do the same! A Christmas card is an easy way to do that. Addresses are available via Google or the FAA database. We all have those teachers, preachers, CFI’s, and managers who we really mean to “write and thank.” Make it your resolution for this New Year.

Seniors look forward to the postman with today’s mail. Make someone’s day! The photo shows some of the nearly 100 cards that I received last Christmas. Send some, get some. They are not just “Christmas“ cards, they are a personal touch. Go ahead, make my day!  Send some cards! 

To those of you that have been following along with the evolution of our ON THE FLY newsletter, I'm sure you've noticed the abundance of changes that our newsletter has endure over the last several months. In creating this newsletter, I have one goal in mind: to create the most appealing, applicable, and easy-to-use newsletter for you—our membership—to utilize and benefit from. With that goal in mind, we've made some additional changes to the formatting of ON THE FLY.

The  icon is a button to an external link, such as the link to the full NGPA events calendar, or any of the links found in the ON THE FLY "FLIGHT SERVICE" section.

The  icon is a button found next to events in the "PREPARE FOR LANDING" section, which allows you to add that particular event to you personal calendar. 

Lastly, the  icon is a button that provides you access to contact a particular person, myself included, via email regarding their article or our newsletter. 

Photo banners in this newsletter are also links to posts shared on Instagram via our hashtag #NGPAEverywhere, or to the applicable chapter's Facebook or Instagram page.
As time goes on, it might become necessary for additional button types. The best thing you can do is look out for blue text and icons; if it's blue, it's a link of some sort. Of course, if you have any questions or concerns, you can always contact me or submit feedback via our ON THE FLY Feedback Form, of which the link is found at end of this newsletter.

I hope you've benefitted from the changes that we've implemented, and that you enjoyed reading this month's ON THE FLY email newsletter. Until next month—

Clear skies!
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