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November Chapter Meeting – Thursday, Nov. 15th at 6pm

Please join us for our annual membership meeting on November 15th at 6pm at Palmer Place in downtown La Grange. This is a great meeting to attend because we’ll be introducing our new officers… it’s a perfect excuse for everyone to get together for dinner and drinks

If you plan on attending, please respond to this email by November 10th with the number of people in your party so that we can reserve enough space at the restaurant. The address and website for Palmer Place is listed below. We hope to see everyone there!

Palmer Place

56 S. La Grange Road

La Grange, IL 60525

Chapter Elections Open for Voting Through Nov. 1st

We’ve reached the exciting time of officer elections in our chapter! Here is the link to the election ballot:

Below are bios on each of the candidates. Our new officers will be announced at the November membership meeting! Voting will close on Nov 1st, so please complete the survey before then. Thanks!


Maureen Hallacy –

My name is Maureen Hallacy. Since joining Women in Aviation International in 1997, I have never enjoyed my membership more since being involved in Chicago’s Leading Edge chapter. I served as Treasurer 2011-2013, President 2013-2015 and Board of Directors member 2016-2018. My aviation career began with my private license in 1992, to a long career at a regional airline as first officer and captain, to the present, where I am a first officer for United Airlines on the 737. I look forward to continuing to further Chicago’s Leading Edge’s mission of connecting, inspiring, and supporting women in all aspects of aviation as president of the chapter once again.

Vice President:

Hannah Larson –

Hello! My name is Hannah Larson and I would be honored for the opportunity to serve again as  the Chicago’s Leading Edge Chapter Vice President. I currently am a Captain for SkyWest Airlines on the CRJ out of O’hare International Airport. I have been around flying my entire life and caught the bug very early on. I had my first ride at 3 years old with my Dad in his small experimental plane. Growing up I can remember every Sunday afternoon going up with Dad and never could get enough of it. I graduated University of Dubuque in Dubuque, IA in May 2014 with a double major in Flight Operations and Communications. During my time there I participated on our University’s Flight team as a SCAN & E6B competitor. I also served as Vice President of my communications honor society. My last semester I had the privilege of interning with Southwest Airlines in Dallas, TX as their Flight Operations Safety Intern. After graduation I spent a year getting my flight instructor certificates and working as an SIC contract pilot for some 91 operations. In fall of 2015 I moved to the west Chicago suburbs to flight instruct at Illinois Aviation Academy out of the DuPage Airport. I was there until September 2016 when I accepted a position with SkyWest Airlines. My passion for aviation flows deep within my blood and love encouraging others to join our industry with sharing the happiness and success it has brought me. I look forward to building on Chicago’s Leading Edge mentorship program and assisting in any way that I can!

Karyn Nusbaum –

Hello! My name is Karyn Nusbaum and I have been actively involved in the Chicago’s Leading Edge Chapter of Women in Aviation since 2014. I first served as the secretary then took on the fundraiser chair position for the past year, therefore, I think it would be exciting and a new challenge to act as Vice President of our chapter. While in college at the University of Illinois, I was introduced to Women in Aviation International and got involved with the collegiate chapter. Once graduating with a Bachelor’s Degree and moving back to Chicago, I was very excited to hear about the local Women in Aviation Chapter and got involved immediately. I am currently a captain at SkyWest Airlines flying the CRJ 200/700/900 aircraft out of Chicago’s O’Hare Airport. I have been very lucky to live where I am based as I have always considered Chicago my home. In my spare time I enjoy traveling, snuggling with my pup, photography and just picked up scuba diving this summer! If elected, my objective is to aid the President with chapter duties and tasks, continue to help promote the many aspects of aviation through community events, outreach, education and mentoring as well as publishing the chapter newsletter with new and exciting information! Thank you for considering me as the new Vice President.


Howard Pae –

My name is Howard Pae and I ask for your consideration as I run for the Chapter’s Secretary position in the upcoming election. I am a 4th year member of the Chicago’s Leading Edge Chapter, a former Lewis University Flight Instructor, Lewis University’s Flight Team Coach and currently a 4th year Captain at SkyWest Airlines. Many members probably have worked with me at various chapter events, former students, friends, mentors or co-workers. And here is why I believe I am a qualified candidate for the position. My confidence and commitment to the role roots from my experience as the Scheduling Liaison under the Scheduling Committee of our pilot’s labor representative group at SkyWest Airlines. The role was to represent the entire 4700 pilots in meeting with the company’s Crew Planning Team and discuss, negotiate and relay all 20 domiciles’ schedules each month. During my 2 and half years on the job, I credited my success to one skill, communication. It was my job to communicate with the Crew Planners, Regional Scheduling Representatives (the domicile reps) and the pilots. Through this humbling task, I gained experience and knowledge in understanding how crucial the Liaison role was to the pilots. And I believe the Secretary’s role mirrors the Liaison position in which, the Secretary works as the liaison between the chapter members and everyone else. This chapter has given me countless networking opportunities, friendships and most of all mentors. I believe after being a member for 4 years, armed with the industry knowledge and dedication, it is time for me to give back to the chapter by working as your Secretary. I want to be the bridge that allows future chapter members to have the chances I was given and the current members to give back the mentorship I received. Thank you for your time and consideration, I look forward to the opportunity to serve this amazing group!


Jennie Pfeifer

Hi everyone, my name is Jennifer.  I have served as Treasurer for two terms so far and would be happy to be re-elected for a third term!  Just a little about my background…I have my Bachelors degree in Finance from Loyola University of Chicago and my Masters degree in Aviation and Transportation Management from Lewis University.  I have been Executive Secretary for Chicago Executive Airport for two and a half years. I believe that my business, records keeping and organizational skills make me perfect for this position. I hope you will re-elect me.  Thank you!


Julia Harrington


Chicago’s Leading Edge

Women in Aviation International

2018 Scholarships Due November 12th, 2018

The 2018 Chicago’s Leading Edge Chapter Scholarships are officially here!  This year we’ll be offering the following:

  • Dispatch Scholarship 2018– Recipient of the award will receive $500 toward the aviation dispatch written and practical exam. The recipient should demonstrate their desire to work in aviation dispatch, as well as proof of enrollment in a dispatch course.
  • Flight Training Scholarship 2018 – Recipient of the award will receive $1,000 to put toward flight training for private, instrument, commercial, multi-engine or CFI ratings.
  • Future’s Unlimited Scholarship 2018– Recipient of the award will receive $750 intended to cover conference registration, banquet, hotel, and airfare for one person to attend WAI’s 2019 Annual Conference in Long Beach, CA.
  • Paperless Pilot Scholarship 2018 – This award is for an iPad and a one-year subscription to ForeFlight.  The recipient will receive an iTunes gift card in the amount of $100 intended to cover the purchase of ForeFlight.  The iPad will be a refurbished 4th generation iPad WiFi + Cellular 16GB.
  • Tail Wheel Endorsement Scholarships 2018 – Recipient of the award will receive $1000 to put toward training fees in order to receive a tail wheel endorsement.

Click on the scholarship page to apply and email applications to when complete.  Applications are due November 12th, 2018.

Nominations for elections on October 15th

It’s time for elections! Nominate yourself or another member for the following positions by replying to this email.  Nominations will close October 15th and voting will take place online. The officer positions available are:





The term is for two years and the only qualification is that you’ve been a member in good standing for the previous six months.  We will train you on these rewarding positions.  I personally have learned so many things during my time as president, they are too numerous to list.  So, take the opportunity to get involved with one of the largest and most successful chapters of Women in Aviation International!

Julia Harrington


Chicago’s Leading Edge

Girls In Aviation Day – October 13th, 2018

The Chicago’s Leading Chapter of Women in Aviation annual Sky’s the Limit: Interactive Aviation Camp date is set! We will be hosting approximately 100 high school age women who will be able to explore all of the amazing possibilities available in the field of aviation.  Participants will have the opportunity to:

  • Fly a flight simulator
  • Pre-flight a Cessna 172
  • Try the new air traffic control simulation
  • Experience the excitement of air racing

Date:  October 13th, 2018

Time:  8:30AM-3:00PM

Location:  Lewis University, Romeoville at the Harold E. White Aviation Center

Women in Aviation, International is dedicated to the advancement and encouragement of women in the field of aviation.  Chicago’s Leading Edge is hosting this educational outreach event in hopes of inspiring young high school females to develop an interest in aviation.  This event is sponsored and supported by Lewis University.

There is no cost to participants!  2018 participants can RSVP and register at   Please RSVP by October 1st, 2018.  Chapter members, if you’d like to volunteer for the event, contact our Volunteer Coordinator at

September Chapter Meeting – Saturday, Sept. 8th

Beginning September 8th, Exelon and the DuPage Flight Center will be sponsoring a traveling exhibit for the WASP WWII Museum. The exhibit showcases WASP life at Avenger Field, the impact of World War II on daily life and their experiences in Sweetwater, TX.

You can help support the WASP WWII Museum by attending the opening event on September 8th at the DuPage Flight center from 11:30am to 1:30pm. The event will include a presentation by WASP WWII Museum Lead Archivist, Ann Haub. Admission requires a discretionary donation and appetizers will be provided. Please see the attached flyer for more information.

If you have any questions, please let us know!


June Chapter Meeting – June 14th

CLE will be touring the ORD Air Traffic Control Tower on June 14th. Due to space constraints in the tower and consideration to the working controllers this event will be limited to 12 people. The first 12 people to RSVP will be awarded a spot on the tour. Details are provided below. If you RSVP “yes” to this tour and cannot make it, please let us know as soon as possible so we can fill your spot with another member.

Date/Time: June 14th at 9:45am

Location: Terminal 2, departure level just prior to security

Parking: Short term parking lot across from the Hilton

Requirements:  This tour is only available to US Citizens and if you are interested in attending you must RSVP to this email with your full name and date of birth. You will also be required to show a government issued photo ID.

We look forward to another great tour with our friends at ORD Tower!

Summer 2018 Newletter

Our summer newsletter is below! It includes a lot of good information including upcoming events, CLE member achievements, a job announcement and mentorship information. Check it out!

Summer 2018 Newsletter

Past newsletters can be found by clicking “newsletter” on the list to the left of the page.  Thanks!

May Chapter Meeting – May 14th at 7pm

Please join us on May 14th at 7pm for a fun night of bowling at Pinstripes in South Barrington! It will cost $8 for bowling and $5 for shoe rentals. See below for the South Barrington address. If you’d like to join us, please RSVP to

Pinstripes, 100 W. Higgins Road
South Barrington, IL 60010

Hope to see you there!

April Chapter Meeting – April 17th at 6pm

Back by popular demand our next meeting will be a self-defense class hosted by Ed Bilski, a 5th degree black belt and martial arts instructor. Please join us on April 17th at 6pm for this special event. We’ll be meeting at Lewis University in the Harold White Building, Room 109.

Also, if anyone has pictures from the WAI conference please send them our way! We’d love to see what sort of CLE representation we had throughout the event. Tag us on Facebook or email any pictures to!

Hope to see everyone at our self-defense class!