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

PHD. MBA. MHS. Type rated on A350, A330, B777, B747-400, B747-200, 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. Fighting for Aviation Safety and Airline Employee Advocacy. Safety Culture and SMS change agent.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

DFW Virgin Launch Party

A quick trip to Dallas and I'm home--- With a smile on my face and a memory of a really great time!

The Virgin Launch Party, in support of Cancer Awareness, was a great success.  Not only for the donations they received, but we had a concert with Willie Nelson, and I finally got to meet Richard Branson.

Richard, your captains at Virgin Australia, and myself--- the Flight Podcast team--- are looking forward to our interview with you.

Richard and Me

I met a wonderful new friend, Karla, who invited me to this event. She said that I'm "the best pilot she's ever dated."  I first met @KarlaAntelli on twitter and she flew in from New York for the event. I'm really excited to read her recently published book, 100 Men... (or 400 Dollars)

Thank you for a great time! 

And then I ran into another friend from Twitter. Brad Sapit. Brad congratulations on graduating! Way to go!

Michael Martinez and Brad Sapit

 Virgin Flight Attendants

Then off to the concert with Willie....

  Willie Nelson

Now... the VIRGIN Challenge! 

I came up with a "brilliant" idea on behalf of the Centennial Of Women Pilots event.  What if Virgin Australia, Virgin America, and Virgin Atlantic take the Fly It Forward campaign to the next level---

What if Richard Branson filled his planes with women who've never been in the sky--- across the world--- and take them for a flight? One flight per company--- We would definitely make the 2010 new women in the sky!

This sounds exactly like an event that belongs to Virgin. Richard, Virgin would become the most female friendly airline in the world. That title has your name all over it.

Enjoy the Journey!

~ Karlene


  1. Sooooooo cool! Great idea and great dress!!!

  2. Thanks Vic! You should have been there!

  3. Sounds like a great night... and also appears that you managed to charm him into that chat we've been chasing!! If Vaustralia end up engaging in the gig then Kenny and I will have to be part of it. Well done Mrs. P. If I need anything of value to be done in the future, I'm going to get you to do it :) Your efforts everywhere by everybody for all reasons are well appreciated, Karlene.

  4. Thanks Marty! Could it be the morning after... Who? What? But I'm on it! He is really an amazing man. Created an exceptional product. And knows how to market. What more is there? Oh...and now he has a picture with me.;) Life is good.

  5. These pictures are excellent! It looks like you had such a wonderful time. I love your Virgin idea Karlene! You are on a roll and can't be stopped.

  6. Thanks Heather! We did have a great time. Getting a little nervous for the magnitude of the party... but all I can do is fly with it now.

  7. Great pix, Karlene. Keeping my fingers crossed that Richard takes you up on your idea for making Virgin the most female friendly airline. I would make a point of flying Virgin!

  8. Karlene -
    I'll be flying with some women on Sunday. right now I have 4 lined up, between 8 and 55 years old. Still waiting for a few more to get back to me. I hope we make it to 2010!


  9. Excellent point Linda. I think many women would make a point of flying Virgin!

  10. Ben, This is so GREAT!!!! I hope we can make it too! Make sure you click on the $100 bill when you get your numbers in and I'll enter you in the drawing... 4 or more times!!! Thanks.

  11. Karlene- Looks like you NEVER stop! Always on the go, working on fantastic ideas and getting things done! The party and "date" must have been fantastic... me.. I know NOTHING of aviation except how to board a plane... but if Virgin made itself "woman freindly" I most certainly would make the effort to fly on it.. and know lots of women to influence in the same direction! take care,, hope to see you Sunday! L.

  12. And I mean that- I seriously could not have picked a better "date"! The party was a blast, and the people at V are awesome. Karlene, I loved talking with you, you are an inspiring woman and pilot. Since my party here in the D continues- I will wish you much success for the event this weekend with those girls!

  13. I hope to see you too L! I'm thinking if women are flying...the men will come too!

  14. Wow, I believe you should get that picture enlarged and framed! You really do have influence, but you work hard at it, I would also fly Virgin if they were the most female friendly airline, what a fantastic story that would make to go into the in-flight magazine.

    Good luck for Sunday, I expect to see lots and lots of pictures, you have really pulled this off big time :0) xx Well done to you.

  15. Thanks for the luck on Sunday! We need it. Yeah, I'm thinking Richard and I might have to be framed. :)

  16. !!!!!!!!

    Wow: this must have been a GOOD time!

    Maybe Richard has already framed that picture...
    I read about him in CABIN FEVER, written by Mandy Smith [under the guidance of Nicola Stow]. Mandy
    is a retired VIRGIN flight attendant. Richard has a reputation for treating his employees VERY well, and fairly.

    GREAT dress, Karlene!
    Airlines should have one day a year, where
    pilots could dress up in civilian clothes.
    You could wear that sensational dress!!

    1. Wow... a flash back to a really fun time! Yes, I think that would be a great idea. We need to have more fun in life if we laughed a bit more.


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