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"We are the protagonists of our stories called life, and there is no limit to how high we can fly."


Type rated on A330, B747-400, B747, B757, B767, B737, B727. International Airline Pilot / Author / Speaker. Dedicated to giving the gift of wings to anyone following their dreams. Supporting Aviation Safety through training, writing, and inspiration.

Friday, November 28, 2014

Sandra Hatley

Friday's Fabulous Flyer!

Sandra Hatley
Sandra Hatley is an aviation professional, flight instructor and commercial pilot. Licenses and ratings she currently holds includes an AMEL Commercial Inst., CFII and MEI. Her father was in the Air Force as a Flight Engineer and is now an active commercial pilot, as well as her uncle, and a couple of her aunts were flight attendants. One could say she never stood a chance against aviation, however her journey did not begin until she herself became a Flight Attendant for Mesa Air Group in 2006.


During that time, in true cliche form, Sandra saw the possibility of becoming a pilot as a stimulating reality and joined ATP in Daytona Beach, FL at the age of 21. From there she moved on to her first Part 61 CFI gig in Birmingham, AL where her folks live, then over to a Part 141 CFI position for Middle Tennessee State University, and then landed her first Part 121 First Officer position for Seaborne Airlines in the USVI flying DHC-6 Twin Otters at that age of 25 (tough gig!).
 

During her time in the islands she focused on beginning to obtain her Bachelor's degree with Embry Riddle Aeronautical University's online Worldwide program. After only one short year of island hopping and boardwalk rum having, Sandra experienced her first furlough due to poor economical conditions on St. Croix, in perfect conjunction of new island routes provided by Jet Blue.


From there, Sandra went back home to Birmingham, AL and began humbly performing lineman and managerial duties at a local Class E airport, as well as freelance flight instructed to residents located on the field. Hungry for salary, benefits, and to move out of mom's house, she changed direction and became a licensed property & casualty insurance producer with focus on aviation and aircraft insurance for an outfit back in Middle Tennessee. She likes Tennessee and would like to stay, haha.


It didn't take long for Sandra to figure out that typical office life wasn't going to be enough to satisfy her rambunctious, entrepreneurial and ambitious spirit. She graciously left insurance and in an attempt to begin a flight school of her own via an elaborate craigslist post, Mufreesboro Aviation owner Jim Gardner found and hooked Sandra to come operate alongside his vision.


Murfreesboro Aviation is a full time operating Part 61 flight school and Cessna certified maintenance facility. They offer flight training from Private thru MEI and ATP on a fleet of 1 Cessna 152, 2 Cessna 172s, and a Beechcraft Duchess. Many residents on the field utilize the instructors for their own aircraft as well. Murfreesboro Aviation sits next door to MTSU's Part 141 program, and acts as a relief to university students unable to obtain a flight lab in the university curriculum.
 

Murfreesboro Aviation also offers CATS testing for pilot and mechanic writtens, as well as serves as a pilot store for necessary charts, headsets, and all other training materials. Though there is an FBO on the field, Murfreesboro Aviation serves as a 24 hour FBO facility and even goes as far as providing crew cars and Hertz rental car services.


Sandra realizes many may wonder why she has not jumped the regional train yet, and just shy of an ATP herself at the age of 28 and with her BS degree, she is seriously considering it. Her experience thus far has been somewhat unconventional, and she is holding strong for a successful position in the realm of General Aviation. You will find that among most of the instructors at Murfreesboro Aviation, too. Always safe, but somewhat a "rogue" crew.

While enjoying the camaraderie at Murfreesboro Aviation, Sandra is working on beginning a Women in Aviation chapter in Nashville, TN to parallel and support the local university only chapter. Her focus has shifted on enjoying the present, focusing and working hard on the present, and allowing all the pieces fall as they may.

Enjoy The Journey!
XO Karlene

8 comments:

  1. Best wishes to Sandra and for continued success in her GA field. If she has floatplane/seaplane rating even an ASES and with Twin Otter experience already, she'd have found a job flying float otters in Maldives or Seawings Dubai or Cinnamon Air in Sri Lanka and some other places that have a shortage of Seaplane pilots..of course she'd have to move out of the US and her beloved Tennessee ;) It is something to consider though, seriously, to widen the scope of experience, to pick up an ASES and there may be opportunities in the USA also coming up in GA aspects of it. A little voice in my head says so :) Cheers!

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    1. Anup, Thank you so much for the wonderful comment!! So many opportunities... I love that little voice in your head.

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  2. Sandra,
    You had me at "Twin Otters in the USVI!" I too used to fly them down there, for the VI Seaplane Shuttle. Small world! Sadly, Hurricane Hugo literally blew us out of the water back in '88.

    I agree with Anup. If you have you AMES, drop everything and fly for Air Maldives! What a dream job..when I hang up the keys to my Airbus, I may be tempted to fly for them myself!

    Best of luck out there!

    Eric

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    1. Eric, I think we would all hang up our keys! Thank you so much for the comment!

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    2. Cap'n Aux thanks! I spent the years 2001-2005 in Maldives running a regional airline as GM..the boxing day tsunami of 2004 wiped us out but luckily all of us escaped. Was a scary time. But hey, nothing beats Twotter flying barefoot in the tropics..uniform shirt with epaulets, shorts, barefeet flying..you'd fit right in ;)

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    3. Wow... So glad you survived those exciting times! I'm jealous too. :)

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  3. Great story K, I love the "she never stood a chance against aviation." Isn't that so true for all of us........; )

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    1. I love that too. I never stood a chance either! lol The stories of our life

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