June 15, 2023

Northern Lights Aero Foundation’s 2023 Elsie Awards recipients

Jon Robinson

Cathy Press in 1998 took over leadership of the family business Chinook Helicopters, which provides rotary- and fixed-wing flight training out of Abbotsford, BC. (Photo: Chinook Helicopters)

The Northern Lights Aero Foundation announced its 2023 recipients of the Elsie Award program, designed to recognize Canadian women who have made a significant contribution to aviation or aerospace. The awards program, named after aviation pioneer and human rights activist, Elsie Gregory MacGill, is organized in seven categories.

“Once again, eight incredible women are being recognized by our organization,” said Kathleen Lang, President, Northern Lights Aero Foundation. “We look forward to celebrating their accomplishments at our new, larger venue, The Pearson Convention Centre.”

The 2023 gala awards dinner is scheduled for October 21, 2023, at the
Pearson Convention Centre in Brampton, Ontario, with tickets going on sale in July.

The 2023 recipients include:

Business Award
Cathy Press, CEO of Chinook Helicopters

Education Award
Dr. Joana Rocha, Professor, Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Carleton University

Engineering Award
Heather Beaton, Fellow, Aircraft Design & Development Engineering, Bombardier

Flight Operations Award
Kristin Long, Captain and Standards Pilot, WestJet Airlines

Government Award
Major Catherine Cabot, aerospace engineer, Canadian Armed Forces

Trailblazer Award
Glenna Sharratt, flight operations consultant

Rising Star Award
Alisha Sohpaul, Airworthiness Inspector, Transport Canada Airworthiness Inspector

Rising Star Award
Yasna Taieb, Inflight Operations Manager, Jazz Aviation