(From top, left) Captain Rachelle Jones, First Officer Stephanie Grant and flight attendants Diana Galloway and Robin Rogers.
The AFL-CIO NOW blog reports:
Last month, when first officer Stephanie Grant of Atlantic Southeast Airlines got the call to replace the co-pilot scheduled to crew Flight No. 5202 from Atlanta to Nashville, she didn’t realize she and the rest of the crew were about to make history.
But Grant, along with Capt. Rachelle Jones, both members of the Airline Pilots (ALPA), and flight attendants Diana Galloway and Robin Rogers, both members of AFA-CWA, became the first all-female, all African American crew to operate a commercial flight. Coincidentally, it happened during Black History Month.
Grant told Atlanta’s WXIA TV:
“When I got to the cockpit and I saw Rachelleâ€“we just met a few weeks priorâ€“I was just ecstatic when I saw her in there.”
At first, Rogers said:
“We did not realize the historic ramifications of it. We were just like, OK, this is going to be fun.”
But, Jones, a former Delta Airlines customer service agent and one of just 10 African American women airline captains in the country, recalled thinking:
“This could be a first, so let’s be on our P’s and Q’s.”
Galloway said the thrill of working together put:
“…a little more pep in our step. I think we were just so proud.” …