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WHEREAS, the United States is recognized as a global leader in aerospace safety, efficiency, and innovation; and
WHEREAS, the aerospace industry is dependent upon a skilled workforce to maintain this exemplary level of quality; and
WHEREAS, local leaders throughout the government and community in the Commonwealth recognize the importance of the aerospace industry to economic prosperity, national security, and citizen safety in the United States; and
WHEREAS, women have been involved in aviation since its earliest days, from E. Lillian Todd, who became the first woman to design and build aircraft in 1906; to Harriet Quimby, who became the first American woman to earn a pilot’s license and to cross the English Channel in 1911; to Helen Richey, who became the first woman pilot for a U.S. commercial airline in 1934; to Astronaut Dr. Sally Ride, who became the first American woman in space in 1983; to Jeana Yeager, who co-piloted the first non-stop and non-refueled flight around the world of the Voyager in 1986; to Astronaut Eileen Collins, who became the first female Space Shuttle pilot in 1995, and the first female Shuttle commander in 1999; and
WHEREAS, although the number of women involved in the aviation and aerospace industry has steadily increased, women are still underrepresented; and
WHEREAS, it is recognized that the path to increasing the participation of women in aviation and aerospace is through a collaborative effort of government, industry, and dedicated organizations and individuals to expose young women to positive female role models, to inspire them to study aviation STEM curriculum, and to prepare them to pursue goals in aviation and aerospace;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Ralph S. Northam, do hereby recognize October 5, 2019, as GIRLS IN AVIATION DAY in our COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA, and I call this observance to the attention of all our citizens.