Nicole Malachowski to be First Female Thunderbird
Thunderbirds to get first female pilot (Air Force Times)
The 2006 Thunderbird team wonÃ¢€™t start training until this fall, but it already is headed for the history books. The Air Force Air Demonstration Squadron on Thursday announced the selection of Capt. Nicole Malachowski as the teamÃ¢€™s No. 3 right wing pilot, making the 1996 Air Force Academy graduate the first female demonstration pilot in the ThunderbirdsÃ¢€™ 52 year history.
In fact, sheÃ¢€™s the first female demonstration pilot on any U.S. military high performance jet team.
An F-15E pilot assigned to RAF LakenheathÃ¢€™s 494th Fighter Squadron, Malachowski just returned from a deployment in Southwest Asia and was on leave when she received the news.
Ã¢€œItÃ¢€™s a great privilege to be given the opportunity to be a part of the Thunderbird team, an organization that represents the finest traditions of our Air Force,Ã¢€ the Las Vegas native said in a press release.
A major milestone, to be sure.