Happy January, and welcome to the new year! Our organization is almost one month in to 2022, and we can't wait to share more of our upcoming events and highlights with you, ON THE FLY.
The incredible work of our organization is supported and carried out by a dedicated team of volunteers across our organization. As NGPA continues to grow and take on more initiatives we are always looking for motivated members to help with our organizational mission to BUILD, SUPPORT and UNITE the LGBTQ aviation community worldwide.
Don't let your dream job wait for you, the flight deck is calling! Visit our jobs database for inclusive workspaces, where employees can learn, grow, and be their authentic selves.
Enjoy dinner with your Gulf Coast Flyer family, hosted at Buca di Beppo Italian Restaurant at 6:30 PM CT. Please RSVP via the group Facebook page to reserve your spot.
Miles of blue skies soar over the San Jacinto mountains and provide a majestic backdrop for the NGPA's flagship Palm Springs Winter Warm-Up Presented by United Airlines. With deep Mid-Century Modern roots, the quirky, welcoming spirit of Palm Springs provides a perfect oasis for the NGPA's extremely popular winter fly-in event that has steadily grown over the years.

The Expo will feature hundreds of ATP-qualified active airline pilots seeking employment, general aviation pilots interested in new products and services, and budding aviators seeking opportunities at flight schools for their career advancement. Guest speakers and educational seminars for general aviation, business/corporate, and commercial pilots are in the lineup of events, which cater to a broad range of aviation interests.

The 2022 NGPA Industry Expo will be a fully vaccinated event for all exhibitors and attendees. This will ensure our ability to provide the most protection for our members, attendees, and exhibitors alike while also giving us greater latitude to see everyone’s smiling faces, mask-free!

Join us as we visit the HARS museum at Albion park followed by lunch & drinks at the Imperial Hotel at Clifton!
The NGPA Metroplex Flyers of Dallas and Ft. Worth will be getting together for their monthly chapter event. Reference the chapter Facebook page for more details. 
Are you a local or university chapter leader? NGPA local and university chapters offer the most frequent events and allow members to get together and network. Share your events, and we'll help you spread the word that your NGPA members are getting together.

Happy January! 

Every day is giving us just over a minute more daylight here in the northern hemisphere, depending on your latitude. As a big sunlight enthusiast, I enjoy this extraordinarily predictable good news.

We are just weeks away from the Winter Warm-Up & Industry Expo Presented by United Airlines in Palm Springs, CA. It will have been two years since we’ve gathered in Palm Springs, and what a couple of years it has been (RIP Betty White!). Registration for the Winter Warm-Up is currently sold out, so please join the waitlist if you’re interested in attending. The NGPA Industry Expo is still open for registration.

Be on the lookout over the next several weeks for information about the 2022 cycle of our Ascend Mentor Program. This year’s mentor program is bringing a suite of enhancements that will allow more members to participate as a mentor or mentees. Look for more information in your inboxes and on our website soon

I am still very excited about the success of 2021’s scholarship program. We were able to award scholarships to twenty-five recipients totaling over $150,000, many of whom we will get to meet in Palm Springs in February. Even more exciting is that in 2022 we will celebrate giving away our one-millionth dollar in scholarships.

Stay warm, be safe, and find some sunshine!

At the century mark of commercial aviation I’ll share some good advice and a few whoppers!  Not in any particular order. Here goes!

It’s winter, with ice on the airframe and on the runway, the good, the bad, and the ugly.  Upon encountering ice, climb NOW. Football coach was asked why they didn’t pass more often. He said “three things can happen and two of them are bad.”  Icing? Climb immediately! Get higher.Three things can happen and two of them are good.  It gets colder and the ice stops forming. You reach clear air and the ice stops. Or neither of those occur and the ice continues to build. At least you now have additional altitude to give yourself more options. We sprayed leading edges and props with Pledge furniture polish. Tall tale? I can’t say but we used a lot of polish. Lies? Pilot reports of braking action. To avoid  being the bearer of bad tidings, everybody lies. Dr. House of TV fame used that as a standard in his decision making. I recommend you do the same. Very, very poor is the polite term for nil! Major hubs have machines to measure traction, the rest of us depend on the previous aircraft s report. 

Moving on,  let’s talk weight and balance. In many airplanes, especially those with propellers, the CG doesn’t stay put. It moves forward or aft as fuel is burned. True lie? As my cargo Cessna 206 used up it’s fuel, the CG moved aft. Upon shutdown, as the prop stopped, the Cessna settled slowly onto the tail tiedown ring, nose wheel in the air. You may want to do a second W&B without all that fuel weight. In some propeller airplanes the CG moves with gear retraction. Usually aft! Often not helpful.

The chart says…I recommend you read up on the TERPS criteria. MEA and the other alphabet names for minimum altitudes guarantee us protection from terrain. They do that by adding some value, 1000 feet in most cases, and two thousand in “mountainous terrain”.  In Gann’s High and the Mighty, John Wayne knew he had 1000’ and used 700’ of it. Engine out or loaded with ice, let’s not stall or turn away from the airport in front of us without using that cushion of protection provided. Landing minimums? Not much extra there.
We have four kinds of minimums. Published minimums, company minimums (higher or lower), Friday night minimums (not charted), and Christmas Eve minimums. Christmas Eve minimums are the lowest. The company wanted us to try again. I told them we went to Christmas Eve minimums, saw nothing and were not going back. Remember that RVR box is mounted on a pole 12’ above the runway.  Or “We broke out right at minimums” said the preceding aircraft.

Everybody Lies!   Nobody ought to do this for a living without having read the first 80 pages of Ernest Gann’s “Fate is the Hunter”.  Awesome lifesaving advice. 

Stay safe out there!

In a recent episode of “Hunter in Southwest Michigan” I climbed into an old Cessna 172, an airplane that had most certainly seen bluer skies, accompanied by two very good friends and NGPA members for a brief nighttime tour of western Michigan’s cityscape and landscape. Though our flight was short and considerably chilly, I now have another delightful memory of flying friends to look back on. When I started flying several years ago, I viewed aviation as a career with goals, requirements, and check rides, but I’ve been lucky enough to expand my experiences and perspective thanks to a series of outstanding opportunities and really great friends. I think that’s what makes aviation, and our NGPA community, so unique—not only are airplanes super cool and flying extraordinary, but the inimitable friendships and memories that are provided by this niche group of aviators makes our organization more than a group of coworkers and colleagues—we’re a family. 
My little adventure two thousand feet above the shoreline of Lake Michigan reminded me how appreciative I am of all the connections and friends I’ve made through my NGPA membership and involvement, and unimaginable places that those friendships have taken me to. Regardless of your background in aviation or your connection to the NGPA, the benefits of an NGPA membership are priceless and irreplaceable.
2022 is a new year and promises some new chapters for our organization. With more active members than ever in the NGPA’s history, we’re more than ready to take off into 2022 with our Winter Warm-Up and Industry Expo presented by United Airlines. Keep an active scan going for other new member benefits and NGPA events, and use our monthly ON THE FLY to stay up-to-date and connected with your NGPA family.  

I hope you've enjoyed reading 2022's first ON THE FLY. Until next month—

Clear skies!
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