US Navy welcomes first black female tactical jet pilot in its 110 years

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By VT

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The US Navy has welcomed its first black female tactical jet pilot in 110 years.

Later this month, Madeline Swegle will be awarded her Wings of Gold, having successfully completed the navy's tactical air training program. She will subsequently be able to fly fighter jets including the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet, the F-35C Joint Strike Fighter or the EA-18G Growler.

This is the first time that a black woman has received the honor in the 110 years since naval aviation began, after Eugene Burton Ely heralded the dawn of a new technical era when he flew an aircraft off the USS Birmingham on November 14, 1910.

A woman in front of a navy plane.
[[imagecaption|| Credit: US Navy]]

The Navy Times reports that Swegle has become the US Navy's first known Black female TACAIR pilot and she'll be receiving her Wings of Gold this month.

Senator Elizabeth Warren congratulated Swegle on her achievement, Tweeting: "Congratulations, LTJG Swegle! You make the @USNavy and our country stronger."

[[twitterwidget||https://twitter.com/SenWarren/status/1281958994106515456]]

Women in Aviation International reports that the first woman to fly a tactical jet in the US Navy in 1974 was Rosemary Mariner, and Brenda Robinson later became the first African American woman to earn Wings of Gold and rise to become a Navy flight instructor, evaluator and VIP transport pilot.

Billy Jean King also congratulated Swegle, tweeting: "Congratulations to LTJG Madeline Swegle who has become the @USNavy's 1st Black female fighter pilot.

"Her accomplishment comes more than 45 years after Rosemary Mariner became the 1st woman in the Navy to fly tactical jets in 1974. #RepresentationMatters"

[[twitterwidget||https://twitter.com/BillieJeanKing/status/1281948239080628227]]

The navy has previously been criticized for the lack of diversity within its aviation programs, when it emerged that fewer than 2% of all pilots assigned to the F/A-18 Hornet, EA-18 Growler, E-2 Hawkeye and C-2 Greyhound were black.

The Chief of Naval Operations, Admiral Mike Gilday said in a statement: "As a Navy, uniform and civilian, active and reserve, we cannot tolerate discrimination or racism of any kind. We must work to identify and eliminate individual and systemic racism within our force."

This comes after the US Navy released its new task force, Task Force One Navy, last month, created with the aim of tackling "racism, sexism and other destructive biases and their impact on naval readiness."

US Navy welcomes first black female tactical jet pilot in its 110 years

vt-author-image

By VT

Article saved!Article saved!

The US Navy has welcomed its first black female tactical jet pilot in 110 years.

Later this month, Madeline Swegle will be awarded her Wings of Gold, having successfully completed the navy's tactical air training program. She will subsequently be able to fly fighter jets including the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet, the F-35C Joint Strike Fighter or the EA-18G Growler.

This is the first time that a black woman has received the honor in the 110 years since naval aviation began, after Eugene Burton Ely heralded the dawn of a new technical era when he flew an aircraft off the USS Birmingham on November 14, 1910.

A woman in front of a navy plane.
[[imagecaption|| Credit: US Navy]]

The Navy Times reports that Swegle has become the US Navy's first known Black female TACAIR pilot and she'll be receiving her Wings of Gold this month.

Senator Elizabeth Warren congratulated Swegle on her achievement, Tweeting: "Congratulations, LTJG Swegle! You make the @USNavy and our country stronger."

[[twitterwidget||https://twitter.com/SenWarren/status/1281958994106515456]]

Women in Aviation International reports that the first woman to fly a tactical jet in the US Navy in 1974 was Rosemary Mariner, and Brenda Robinson later became the first African American woman to earn Wings of Gold and rise to become a Navy flight instructor, evaluator and VIP transport pilot.

Billy Jean King also congratulated Swegle, tweeting: "Congratulations to LTJG Madeline Swegle who has become the @USNavy's 1st Black female fighter pilot.

"Her accomplishment comes more than 45 years after Rosemary Mariner became the 1st woman in the Navy to fly tactical jets in 1974. #RepresentationMatters"

[[twitterwidget||https://twitter.com/BillieJeanKing/status/1281948239080628227]]

The navy has previously been criticized for the lack of diversity within its aviation programs, when it emerged that fewer than 2% of all pilots assigned to the F/A-18 Hornet, EA-18 Growler, E-2 Hawkeye and C-2 Greyhound were black.

The Chief of Naval Operations, Admiral Mike Gilday said in a statement: "As a Navy, uniform and civilian, active and reserve, we cannot tolerate discrimination or racism of any kind. We must work to identify and eliminate individual and systemic racism within our force."

This comes after the US Navy released its new task force, Task Force One Navy, last month, created with the aim of tackling "racism, sexism and other destructive biases and their impact on naval readiness."