Santa Monica Airport’s Museum of Flying last week announced that this year’s inductees into the California Aviation Hall of Fame are Angela Masson, Mike Melvill, Dick Rutan and Barry Schiff. The California Aviation Hall of Fame is a subsidiary of the Museum of Flying. The award ceremony will be held at the museum on Saturday, May 5, 2018, with a reception beginning at 6:00 p.m. Dinner and the induction ceremony will follow. Previous inductees include Bob Hoover, Clay Lacy and astronaut Buzz Aldrin.
Inductee Angela Masson was American Airlines’ first female chief pilot. She began flying at age 15, but also managed time to nurture an entrepreneurial streak that netted her a number of patents, including one for the first electronic flight bag.
Dick Rutan is the world’s first and only pilot to fly an aircraft around the world nonstop. Along with copilot Jeana Yeager, Rutan piloted Voyager in 1986. Rutan is also a highly decorated Air Force combat pilot holding a Silver Star, Purple Heart, Five Distinguished Flying Crosses and 16 Air Medals.
Captain Barry Schiff has logged more than 28,000 hours of flight time in 356 different aircraft, including the B-52, U-2, P-51, and the V-22 Osprey. Schiff holds every FAA category and class rating, except airship. A columnist for AOPA Pilot magazine, he spent 34 years of his career as a pilot for TWA.
Mike Melvill became the world’s first commercial astronaut when he flew Virgin Galactic’s SpaceShipOne on June 21, 2004. He’s also the sole or joint holder of nine FAI aviation world records in various categories. Melvill served as chief test pilot for Scaled Composites for more than 30 years and retired as the company’s vice president and general manager.
Tickets for the event are $250 and are available for purchase on the Museum of Flying website.