NBAA Salutes WAI Founder, President Dr. Peggy Chabrian’s Contributions to Industry

Contact: Dan Hubbard, 202-783-9360,

Washington, DC, July 26, 2019 – The National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) today thanked Dr. Peggy Chabrian for her many contributions to the aviation community, most notably as the founder, president and CEO of Women in Aviation International (WAI). Dr. Chabrian announced her upcoming retirement from the organization earlier this week during the WAI Connect Breakfast at EAA AirVenture 2019 in Oshkosh, WI.

Recognizing the need to support the encouragement and advancement of women in all aviation career fields and interests, Dr. Chabrian founded the first WAI conference in 1990 and drove its incorporation as a non-profit organization in 1994. Among the group’s members are astronauts, business aviation pilots, maintenance technicians, air traffic controllers, journalists, flight attendants, high school and university students, air show performers, airport managers and many others.

“For 30 years, Dr. Chabrian has been a source of inspiration to women in aviation, and a tireless advocate for educational initiatives and other resources to ensure their success and career growth in the industry,” said NBAA President and CEO Ed Bolen. “NBAA thanks her for her passionate commitment to mentoring and encouraging women to pursue career possibilities within the aviation community, and I know she will continue to inspire lives well into the future.”

NBAA Vice President, Educational Strategy and Workforce Development Jo Damato, CAM, pointed to Dr. Chabrian’s influence on her own career.

“In addition to steering the direction and accomplishments of WAI since its inception, she has touched countless lives throughout the aviation community, and has directly influenced the paths of so many of our industry’s female leaders today,” said Damato. “Dr. Chabrian created a place for ‘women who liked to talk about airplanes’, and I’ve looked to her as a role model since the day I first heard her speak.”

Throughout Dr. Chabrian’s tenure, WAI has awarded more than 948,000 scholarships totaling $12.5 million and established a $1 million endowment fund. The annual International Women in Aviation Conference attracts thousands of attendees each year, and the organization will hold its fifth international Girls in Aviation Day this October.

Dr. Chabrian is a 2,200+ hour commercial/instrument multiengine pilot and flight instructor. She will continue to serve as WAI’s president through April 2020.

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Founded in 1947 and based in Washington, DC, the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) is the leading organization for companies that rely on general aviation aircraft to help make their businesses more efficient, productive and successful. The association represents more than 11,000 companies and professionals and provides more than 100 products and services to the business aviation community, including the NBAA Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition (NBAA-BACE), the world’s largest civil aviation trade show. Learn more about NBAA at

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