Cross Country Tour

Cross Country Tour

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2022 Virtual Cross Country Tour

This year marked our 6th annual Cross Country Tour! We made the decision to once again present the tour virtually over five days, featuring incredible guest speakers from coast to coast, and reaching thousands of young girls and women. 

From March 7-11th, our virtual tour presented from different regions across Canada. Each day consisted of 3 one-hour sessions, with three different speakers per session. 

Women’s contributions to aviation and aerospace are crucial to the future of the industry. With looming occupational shortages and a desire for greater diversity, the need to promote aviation careers to women and girls is more important than ever. This is an opportunity for women of all ages to explore the variety of careers available in aviation and hear from women who are passionate about what they do. 


Each province / territory has unique and interesting aviation careers, roles, and needs. We recommend tuning in to your own region to hear about topics most relevant to you.

Monday, March 7 – Pacific

0900-1000 PST – In the Jump Seat: A look into different ways to travel while working. Participants will hear from Carolyn Hoffman, WestJet Flight Attendant (retired); Rhodielyn Padilla, Flight Instructor; and Brittany Mayo, travelling Aircraft Maintenance Engineer for Top Aces.

1030-1130 PST – On the Tarmac: A look into the critical roles that keep your flights running smoothly. With guest speakers Alisha Sohpaul, PRM (Person Responsible for Maintenance) at Iskwew Air; Michelle Ballantyne, AME at WestJet; and Ryley Ible, Ramp Agent at Executive Aviation.

1300-1400 PST – Beyond the Runway: A look behind the scenes of commercial aviation with Ashley Dhillon, Air Traffic Operations Specialist; Laura Mortensen, Airport Consultant; and Chelsey Wright, Manager Environment, Health and Safety.

Tuesday, March 8 – Central / Territories

0900-1000 CST – Unique Careers: Want to learn more about unique aviation careers? Hear from Tammie Kulyk, an air ambulance pilot, Patricia Beaudin, a chief controller in the RCAF, and Eden McNabb, an AME on the Gulf 757 in this session!

1030-1130 CST – From the Ground Up:

In this session, we will hear from Kendra Kincade, founder and CEO of Elevate Aviation and an air traffic controller, Carly Vancise, an air medic pilot and Tanya Bastien, an avionics system tech! From the ground up, you will learn about different aviation careers.

1300-1400 CST – Aviation Specialists: Would you like to hear from the specialists in aviation? Join this interesting session to hear from Jessica Walker, a jet engine specialist, Kim Ballantyne, a recruitment specialist at Manitoba Aerospace and Nicole Power, a twin otter captain!

Wednesday, March 9 – Ontario

0900-1000 EST – Aviate: Did you know that there are many different routes to being a pilot? Join us as we explore three different stories of women achieving their dreams in the sky. We will be talking to Heather Hills, Flight instructor; Allison Couch, Medevac Pilot, Air Bravo; and Erin Pratt, military helicopter pilot to talk about their every-day tasks, their journey to where they are, and anything you’re curious about – you just have to ask!

1030-1130 EST – Navigate: Have you ever wondered how aircraft are designed to perform at optimal levels? Or what kind of testing an aircraft goes through before flying with passengers? Or how they are kept in tip-top shape to take you safely to your destination? Join this session with Marla Haring, Aerospace Engineer; Crystalle Laamanen, Helicopter Aircraft Maintenance Engineer/Instructor; and Jessica Dizon-Burns, Aircraft Maintenance Engineer/Professor, to answer these questions and many more!

1200-1230 EST – Diversion: Need a quick detour to get your body moving between these informative panels? Follow along as our very own Ontario wing volunteer, Jodie Scarrow and Escape Routes Yoga, lead a short, pre-recorded yoga session to relieve tension and re-centre. 

1300-1400 EST – Communicate: In this panel, we are highlighting some of the people who play a very important part in ensuring a successful flight behind-the-scenes. We will be chatting with Jackie Turnball, Flight Operations Systems Analyst; Angeline Ram, PhD Candidate researching safety reporting participation; and Andrea Kosior, Air Traffic Controller. Have you heard of these roles before? We can’t wait to learn more about how they keep operations running smoothly.

Thursday, March 10 – Quebec (FRENCH)

0900-1000 EST – Le Tour du Monde: Soyez parmis nous lors de cette session pour entendre la pilote Marie-Claire Beaulieu, une opératrice de contrôle aérospatial militaire Micheline Bertrand et une hôtesse de l’air ! Apprenez ce qu’il faut pour voler, comment les aéroports sont navigués autour des aéroports, et les aventures passionnantes et le travail d’un agent de bord!

1030-1130 EST – De la ”shop” au ”prop”: Soyez parmis nous lors de cette session pour entendre le témoignage d’Arianne Aubry-Barbeau, technicienne d’entretien d’aéronefs; Nour Utayim, pilote pour Air Inuit; et Sophie Robert, contrôleur aérien ! Apprenez comment les avions sont construits et réparés, ce que font les pilotes et comment les avions sont navigués autour des aéroports !

1300-1400 EST –La clé du succès, l’entraide: Soyez parmis nous lors de cette session pourentendre le témoignage de Cynthia Leitner, contrôleure de la circulation aérienne; Lcol Tara Willis, opératrice militaire; et Laurie Breton, instructeur de vol! Apprenez comment les avions et les hélicoptères sont navigués autour des aéroports, ce que font nos Forces armées canadiennes et comment apprendre à voler!

Friday, March 11 – Atlantic 

0900-1000 AST – Let’s Fly!: Hear from Dina Jammaz, Air Traffic Controller;  Cassandra Hepp, Aircraft Maintenance Engineer; and a pilot to discover what it takes to get an aircraft from point A to B. 

1030-1130 AST – Airport Behind the Scenes: Head behind the scenes at an airport with Sarah Price, Nunavut Airports Project Manager; Tara Vidito, Senior Manager of Operations at Halifax Airport Authority; and Andrea Landry, Aircraft Rescue Fire Fighter at Halifax Airport Authority.

1300-1400 AST – Maintenance: Enter the exciting and challenging world of aircraft maintenance with Denise Buklis – CAMO Maintenance Manager, Emma Hubert – Maintenance Planning/Programs, and Karly Barker – Senior designer and aviation photographer!

2022 Virtual Tour Recap

Videos Coming Soon…

2021 Tour Recap

In 2021 the Cross Country Tour was presented via webinar with a panel of speakers in each of the 6 sessions. Sessions are available to watch below. 


March 8, 2021

There are a wide variety of career paths in aviation for pilots. We will hear from an airline pilot, a helicopter pilot, a flight instructor, and a charter pilot to find out how each career path is different and what each of them do! 

Maegan Extross hosts military pilot Jackie Ruiz, flight instructor Carolina Cortes, and airline Captain Melissa Haney. 

Aerospace Engineers

March 9, 2021

What exactly is the role of an Aerospace Engineer and how do you become one? Aerospace Engineering is a extremely unique jobs and we are excited to share what they are working on!

Lisa hosts a fantastic session with Aerospace Engineers Rumbi Muvingi, Amanda Kok, and Alida Ryan. 

Aircraft Maintenance Engineers

March 10, 2021

We will explore Aircraft Maintenance with engineers who specialize in structures, avionics, and maintenance. And with only 2% of AME’s being female, how did these women find their way into aircraft maintenance?

Cassandra Hepp hosts AME’s Pam Cochrane, Crystalle Laamanen, and Jessica Dizon in this fun and informative discussion! 

Airport Operations

March 11, 2021

Find out about the wide variety of jobs available in airports such as safety, fire fighting, and business operations. 

Crystalle Laamanen hosts Chelsey Wright, Marilyn King, and Shelley Christian to discuss the different roles involved in running an airport and how operations differ across Canada. 

Air Traffic Services

March 12, 2021

Learn about how planes move through the sky and who they talk to along the way – from choosing their route, taxiing down the runway, and flying the highways in the sky. 

Katie hosts Dawn Whyte, Camille Hummer, and Lisa Berthiaume  as they each talk about the roles they play and how they started!

Regarder en Français

Nous sommes ravis d’offrir également une session en français!

Le mardi 9 mars 2021

Nous sommes heureux d’offrir une journée francophone dans le cadre de notre tournée virtuelle! Cette tournée virtuelle est l’occasion parfaite pour les personnes de tous les âges d’explorer la panoplie de carrières disponibles en aviation et d’entendre des femmes passionnées discuter de leur métier. Préparez-vous à entendre des histoires fascinantes et à apprendre sur des carrières fascinantes en aviation!

Photo Gallery

From 2015 – 2019 Elevate Aviation travelled from coast to coast to bring in-person behind the scenes tours of the aviation industry to more than 20 cities across Canada each March. In 2020 the Cross Country Tour was cancelled due to public health restrictions and moved to an online platform in 2021 and 2022. 

We hope to see you all again live in 2023!