Mar 28, 2022 / Careers

What it Means to Be a Woman in Aviation

From marketing to sustainability, learn how women at Boom got into aviation

We’ve been celebrating women in aviation all throughout Women’s History Month — from our Ask an Engineer Twitter Chat with Dr. Lourdes Maurice to our Museum Monday Twitter Chat about the Women Airforce Service Pilots with the National Aviation Hall of Fame.

We’ve also highlighted the female engineers at Boom. Now, we’re featuring women at Boom who are building the supersonic future, throughout all aspects of our company. From marketing to sustainability, these women in aviation have advice for others entering the industry at any stage of their career.

Rita Drucker
Head of Marketing Partnerships

Rita Drucker flies in a Cessna 172 with her husband and son.

Drucker didn’t know she wanted to go into aviation until she heard about Boom. A former movie studio executive with nearly two decades of entertainment marketing experience, Drucker took the leap into aviation last summer.

“I previously worked with Kathy Savitt, President & Chief Business Officer at Boom,” she said. “Part of the attraction was going to work with Kathy again. Then, when I really got to dig into Boom's mission, how does one pass up an opportunity to disrupt an industry? To have the opportunity to meaningfully contribute to a seismic shift in the way we will be traveling in the future.”

Drucker always felt that certain skills are transferable and that career shifts can be made anytime throughout one’s life.

“A mentor once taught me the value of thinking about your career the way you pack a suitcase for a trip. Every job gives you valuable skills that you can carry over to the next role. I never imagined my skills would transfer to aviation but sure enough, the experience I gained through entertainment and tech, working with product, engineering, long lead times, those all come in very handy here at Boom,” she said.

What advice would she have for other women looking to make an industry change?

“Stop creating roadblocks for yourself,” she said. “There is no reason at all that you can’t translate your skills set to another sector. That said, of course there is a learning curve. And you have to be willing to not be the smartest person in the room for a while.”

Stephanie Colache
Senior Business Operations Program Manager

Stephanie Colache goes on a hike up Mount Evans in Colorado.

In Colache’s case, aviation was always a part of the plan.

“My dream job always included some aspect of aviation,” she said. “From flying planes to working with aircraft in any and every way I possibly could. My parents were both phenomenal support systems for my lifelong desire to work in aviation and I was fortunate to grow up with a father in the Air Force. Growing up around the world on military bases and being introduced and wowed by not only the marvels of US aircraft design and engineering, but also global aircraft design, reinforced my need to work in aerospace in some form.”

Prior to graduating high school, her parents encouraged Colache to follow her dreams and take a less direct route to college, focusing first on an Air Force career as an airborne linguist upon graduation.

“After finishing my military service, I sought other avenues to become involved in aviation,” she added. “I spent time working in commercial and private aviation in a multitude of roles before finding the ultimate culmination of my passions and my skill set in program management. I thrive when I am able to see a 60,000-foot view of what’s happening around me and this career path has allowed me to find the niche of where I can add the most value to the aviation field.”

What would her advice be to other women who are looking to enter the industry at any stage of their career?

“Don’t be afraid to be passionate and don’t be afraid to take the leap,” she said. “Aviation and aerospace are such wide segments of industry and there is always room for passionate new talent. Don’t be afraid to reach out to others. There is a place in aerospace for anyone that wants to explore that passion and understands that so much of aerospace focuses on continued learning and improvement.”

Antonée Thomson
Senior Director, Passenger Product Innovation

Antonée Thomson spends time with her kids outside of work.

“My career path has been a windy and exciting one,” Thomson said. “After obtaining a Master’s in Neuroscience, I pursued a career in business to expand my analytical, research, and creative skills. Since then, I’ve gained expertise in brand strategy, research, marketing, and product innovation across numerous industries — from health and wellness to consumer packaged goods, and now aviation.”

Now, Thomson is charged with the exciting task of driving innovation that delivers a passenger-centric, world-class travel experience onboard Overture.

“In this role, I’m leveraging all of my skill sets. I’m blending insight, creativity, and analytical thinking, as we build passenger-centric innovation that drives customer value, while working within our engineering parameters,” she said.

Thomson didn’t always know she wanted to work in aviation, but when she heard about Boom’s bold vision and the fierce courage it took Blake Scholl, the company’s Founder and CEO, to start the company she was deeply inspired to step into the new challenge.

“I can’t wait to see the remarkable impact on our global community when we make the world dramatically more accessible,” she said. “I’m incredibly proud of the company's commitment to defending our planet for successive generations by building the future of sustainable air travel. It is a rare, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to be part of building a product that will literally change the world, my children’s future–who wouldn't sign up for that?”

A life-long learner at heart, Thomson encourages women making a career shift to explore every inspiring opportunity as there is always new knowledge and skills to be gained.

“When a job, company culture, or leader doesn’t inspire you, move on,” she said. “When you try something new and it’s not quite right, step forward with lessons learned. Lean into new challenges. Don’t be afraid to forge new paths as you never know what amazing opportunity may be right around the next corner.”

What does she love about working at Boom?

“I have the privilege of working alongside incredibly talented people who bring diverse thinking, backgrounds, and expertise, yet we’re all coalesced around the same mission,” she said. “There is a shared passion, sense of camaraderie, and willingness to get ‘scrappy’ together to achieve our mission.”

Sarah Cuiksa
Sustainability & Development Manager

Sarah Cuiksa took a sabbatical to lead overland tours in Southeast Asia and Africa. She's "frying" a group of travelers in the Etosha Pan, a salt pan in the Kalahari Basin of north Namibia.

Sarah Cuiksa’s interest in aviation started when she was growing up in Ohio.

“My dad used to take me to see the air show in Cleveland every Labor Day weekend,” she said. “I wanted to be a Blue Angel or Thunderbird pilot. I was raised on Top Gun and wanted to fly fast jets. As an adult, aviation was consigned to a hobby— a 12-year pursuit for my private pilot’s license. Until I found Boom!”

Boom was Cuiksa’s first venture into aerospace professionally, after working in journalism, marketing, and international development.

“Before joining Boom in 2021, I didn’t understand what opportunities were available in aviation beyond working for the big OEMs, airlines, or airports—or as a pilot,” she said. “When I stumbled upon Boom after moving to Colorado, I was in awe of the company: a vision for commercial supersonic flight, done sustainably, by a startup. I was lucky that Boom’s commercial organization was hiring for a position that matched my skill sets and experience.”

What would her advice be to other women who are looking to enter the industry at any stage of their career?

“Coming from outside of the industry, my biggest takeaway was to drop the assumptions about the types of traditional opportunities or organizations that are out there,” she said. “Aviation careers are far broader than what the general traveler may be familiar with. You could experience startup culture by working for an eVTOL manufacturer; you could be interested in sustainability and work in clean tech for a SAF producer; you could be a designer or marketer and help create aircraft cabin interiors for an optimized passenger experience. The opportunities are so wide-ranging.”

For Cuiksa, the opportunity to work at Boom was a literal dream come true—to fly supersonic—and above all, to contribute to bringing sustainable supersonic flight to mainstream travel.

“Everyone who works at Boom believes so strongly in the mission,” she said. “It creates a shared sense of purpose which is visceral and palpable among colleagues, whether we’re in-office or meeting virtually. I feel proud and grateful every day to be a part of Boom and this bold vision for aviation.”

Lauren Craft
Purchasing Lead

Lauren Craft takes a ride with Boom’s Marty Pierce and Chris “Duff” Guarente.

“I took a school trip to the Air and Space Museum in 8th grade and saw the SR-71 and fell in love,” Craft said. “I started flying in high school and my passion for aviation continued from there.”

Seeing the SR-71 Blackbird made her want to learn about everything aviation related.

“I started flying in high school at my local airport and got to know the local people and businesses,” she said. “An opportunity came up when I was in my senior year of high school to work dispatch at one of the flight schools, so I took it.”

Craft knew she wanted to work in aerospace from a young age, but many women make the switch later in life. What would her advice be to other women who are looking to enter the industry at any stage of their career?

“Don't be afraid to try different jobs within the industry,” she said. “I have done everything from working dispatch, fueling airplanes, working for an Aviation Medical Examiner office before I landed in the aircraft maintenance/supply chain realm. I had always wanted to fly for a living and ultimately decided that I really liked working on the maintenance side of the industry. Find your passion.”

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