Another difference that was odd for me as a Marine Corps officer was that the Navy officers called their enlisted Sailors by their first name. Share. According to her Navy bio, Mariner "was one of six female aviators to earn wings in 1974, and became one of the first female Navy jet pilots, flying the A-4C and the A-7E Corsair II." My brother is an Explosive Ordinance Disposal officer and he often deploys with SEAL Teams. The unit is the second oldest formal aerobatic team (under the same name) in the world, after the French Patrouille de France formed in 1931. LTJG William May. Advertise Here’s how. It was a really cool experience.”. Katie Higgins’ dream as a little girl was to follow in her family’s footsteps and become a pilot. For Part 1 of our two-part story, she discusses the challenges and opportunities she faced throughout her career in a male-dominated field. LTJG Billy May. Although other women have been on the Blue Angels team, none have ever been in the cockpit during a Blue Angels air show until now. WALLOPS ISLAND, Va- The Blue Angels made their inaugural performance at the 8th annual air show in Ocean City on Saturday. Even after you fly, you have to take the time to debrief so you correct any mistakes you might have made. Here's everything that happened Higgins, who flew Fat Albert from 2014 to 2016, said the pool of female pilots qualified to apply for the Blue Angels fighter jet demonstration squadron is … Younger kids did not know a female could be a Blue Angel or Marine and I corrected those misperceptions. If I yelled and screamed every time someone did something wrong, I would be labeled a crazy person. Like all other military personnel, Blue Angel pilots receive their pay based partially on their pay grade, which ranges from O-1, ensign, to O-10, admiral, though most pilots are somewhere in between. Services This training simulates landing on an amphibious assault ship both at night and during the day. This was really my first sense of reward from leadership and it came through experience. Marine Corps aviator Capt. Cook also shares how she guides her team as a Commander, as well as some of the most important lessons she learned as a leader. It also helps you also look professional in the Blue Suit when you are out representing your country. I am now in command of Marine Corps Auxiliary Landing Field Bogue, NC. You have to eat right, be healthy, have time management, and have an attention to detail. Katie Higgins Cook: From a Blue Angels perspective, the strict military chain of command is a bit different. U.S. Marine Corps Capt. Invite Katie To Speak At Your Next Event. The Blue Angels have the swagger down. The BOLD Wire delivers our latest global news, exclusive top stories, industry leading infographics, powerful interviews and bold opinions. This results in your products not being tailored to any one type of person. Write for Us Katie Higgins Cook: The Marine Corps is only 6% female. Katie Higgins joined the team in 2015, becoming the first female Blue Angels pilot. If that doesn’t sound important to you – She also is the first female Blue Angels pilot! She commanded Marines at Parris Island, led the Marine Corps Cyber Command, and now is breaking a glass ceiling that we have not seen consistently in the Marine Corps. A member of the Blue Angels invited her to apply as a pilot for the elite aviation demonstration team. Even though breaking gender barriers wasn’t originally part of Major Cook’s plans, her appointment as the first female Blue Angels pilot proved to be an important milestone in the military. Elite Blue Angels Squadron Gets Its First Female Pilot, In this undated illustration Nancy Morgan Hart, an American colonist living in Georgia defends her home and children against invading British soldiers during the American Revolutionary War. 1948 1946 1948. Carrying on the family legacy, she joined the Marine Corps after graduating from the US Naval Academy. LT Mel Cassidy. Katie Higgins Cook: I have never met her but my current Commanding Officer has and goes on and on about how she is an amazing leader. In the hangar where the jets were being prepped, pilots who looked like statues to masculinity carved … (AP Photo), second-oldest formal flying aerobatic team in the world, one of the most exclusive jobs available to a Naval pilot, other women have been on the Blue Angels team. A New Blue Angels Boss and Pilots The Blue Angels will have a new Boss for 2020-21 seasons. — The U.S. Navy Blue Angels announced on Monday the departure of one popular jet pilot and the return of a former pilot for the 2021 air show season. The Chief of Naval Air Training selects the "Boss," the Blue Angels Commanding Officer. 2020 is the team's 74th anniversary and marks the Blue Angels' 34th year flying the Boeing F/A-18 Hornet. LTJG Gale Stouse. The C-130 is a dual cockpit as it is a two-pilot aircraft. But last weekend was probably the best day of her life, when she successfully became a Blue Angels pilot. Three new F/A-18 Hornet pilots along with several new support officers and enlisted men and women will begin a two to three year tour with the Blue Angels. Part of HuffPost Politics. It breaks down the divide between officers and enlisted and creates closer bonds between its team members. While completing missions is paramount, a Marine Corps pilot’s role as a character model is just as important. LT Maurice Wickendoll. LTJG Ross Robinson. This month, Marine Katie Higgins piloted for the Blue Angels Aviation Team for the last time. Lt. Gen Reynolds does this for me. Katie Higgins Cook: Some of the biggest challenges are peer to peer or cross-functional leadership, getting someone at your same level to get on the same page with you and motivate them to do the task at hand. You can’t fly a plane sick, drunk, tired. Terms of Use. But getting another Major or Lt. Women have served as “maintainers”—support staff—for the U.S. Navy’s precision flying team since 1969, and women pilots joined the Marine Corps ranks in the 1990s. Katie Higgins was selected to pilot the Blue Angels' Lockheed Martin C-130T Hercules transport aircraft, making her the first female Blue Angels pilot. In the Blue Angels, you take these same sentiments but apply them to the extreme. 2020 marks the team’s 50th year utilizing the C-130 as its lead logistics aircraft. While Higgins, 27, isn't the first female squadron member — Navy Lt. Cmdr. I didn’t develop my leadership style until after I left the Naval Academy. This is atypical of the normal flight for the plane where the pilot flying is usually in the left seat. When they do things well, I am their biggest champion and use them as an example to follow to their other Marines. The top position among best female fighter pilots are given to Lt. At the time Lt. Col. Mau flew the… And she could fly planes just as well as her teammates did. Now, she continues to lead and inspire Marines (firefighters, fuelers, and airfield maintainers) as commander of Airfield Operations Company, Marine Wing Support Squadron 271 at Marine Corps Axillary Landing Field Bogue, North Carolina. U.S. Marine Corps Capt. All rights reserved. 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