United Women: In her own words... - United Hub

In her own words...

By The Hub team, November 01, 2019

Amelia Earhart said,

"My ambition is to have this wonderful gift produce practical results for the future of commercial flying and for the women who may want to fly tomorrow's planes."

Earhart's words and actions have been an inspiration for generations of women hoping to fly. However, the aviation industry is still a male-dominated field so we asked some of United's women in charge to share their inspiration and the secrets to success in their own words.

Jill Kaplan

Hi! My name is Jill Kaplan.

I live in New York and my favorite part about working/playing here is everything!

I am the New York/New Jersey President at United Airlines.

I am most proud of raising two young women who, while not perfect, are smart, hardworking and ambitious as well as kindhearted, thoughtful and open-minded and have supported me taking risks in order to build my career and in turn support my family.

My great grandma was an entrepreneur in the auto industry and leader before her time. She was 4'10" and inspired me because she was fearless, tough, smart, hardworking, socially intuitive while also being kind, generous and cared deeply about her employees and customers.

The world needs more female leaders so that younger generations can be inspired to go out of their comfort zone and realize that there are no roadblocks in achieving your desired goal.

As a woman working in the aviation industry, time has been the greatest challenge for me because there is no shortage of opportunities to explore, issues to tackle, customers and employees to speak with, new initiatives to launch, community events to participate in and the list goes on and on …

My best advice for other women in aviation is to speak up, ask for what you want, be bold and never be afraid to question something you don't understand, don't agree with or [that] makes you uncomfortable.

Janet Lamkin

Hi! My name is Janet Lamkin.

I live in San Francisco, and my favorite part about working/playing here is the beauty of this remarkable city and the ability to walk through the neighborhoods.

I am the California President at United Airlines.

I am most proud of the fact that I didn't follow the advice of many and instead listened to my inner voice and took a different course than many of my friends after college. My husband and I traveled and lived abroad, and then we put one another through graduate school while the norm was to buy a house and start a family.

There are several famous women who have inspired me over the years, but my true inspiration comes from my local group of women leaders/friends who work hard every day determined to navigate their lives with grace, fairness, and compassion and to feel good about what they have done at the end of the day. There is a small group of us that connects on a regular basis to check in on jobs/family/life and we support one another in everything we do. Our tag name is Artemis. A Greek goddess who was very powerful and healing!

The world needs more female leaders so that different leadership styles can be highlighted and modeled.

As woman working in the aviation industry, I am excited to be in the world of travel. When I was 16 I traveled to Guadalajara and it changed by life. I was excited to explore different thoughts, cultures, etc. and it served as a strong motivation through school. Our industry has so many opportunities to bring the joy and value of travel to so many.


Sharon Grant

Hello! My name is Sharon T. Grant.

I live in Chicago, IL (USA), and my favorite part about working here is learning something brand new about the aviation industry every day.

My favorite part about playing here is it never gets old just hanging at the airport gazing at our planes taking off and landing.

I am the Vice-President, Chief Community Engagement Officer at United Airlines.

I am most proud of seeing the many colleagues I have managed take on new roles and leadership positions across the company.

Dr. Condoleezza Rice is a leader who inspires me because she was the first female African-American Secretary of State commanding the highest position of leadership responsible for guiding the relations of the US with the world. She embodies the utmost of power, dignity and grace.

The world needs more female leaders so that we can advance the pace of creativity and innovation. Until we close the gap of diversity in thought and action, we will not realize our fullest potential.

As a woman working in the aviation industry, balancing work and family has been the greatest challenge for me. Rising to this challenge has sharpened my strengths and I am grateful to have raised four children during my 26 years in the industry.

My best advice for other women in aviation is to take risks by pursuing various careers throughout your service in the industry. The aviation industry provides a rich and diverse spectrum of challenging fields, in many of which women are still largely underrepresented. The future of our growth and success is dependent on women owning a seat at every table of the organization. The future generation of women leaders is looking to you to keep paving the way.

Making our app more accessible for people with disabilities

By The Hub team, October 28, 2020

We're proud to launch a redesigned version of our United app to make it easier for customers with visual disabilities to manage all aspects of day-of travel, including check-in, viewing reservation details and flight status, bag tracking and more.

This latest version of our app is now available to both Android and iOS users, and it offers increased color contrast and more space between graphics. Furthermore, we have reorganized how information is displayed and announced to better integrate with screen reader technologies like VoiceOver and TalkBack, which are built into most handheld devices. By restructuring the way the information is organized on the app, screen readers are better able to convert text to audio in the proper, logical sequence, allowing customers to better understand and navigate the app.

United Zoom backgrounds for AvGeeks

By The Hub team, October 27, 2020

Calling all AvGeeks and travelers! Take your next video call from a United Polaris® seat, the cockpit or cruising altitude with United-themed backgrounds for use on Zoom and Microsoft Teams.

Newly added to our collection is a background encouraging our employees and customers to vote. Our mission is to connect people and unite the world — and one of the most important ways to do that is to engage in the democratic process. No matter which party you support, we know our democracy will be stronger if you make your voice heard and vote.

So for your next meeting or catch up with friends and family, download the app to either your computer or mobile device to get started.

Looking back at a landmark year with Special Olympics

By Ryan Wilks, October 19, 2020

Earlier this summer, we shone a light on our flagship partnership with Special Olympics and our commitment to the Inclusion Revolution. In that same story, we introduced you to our four Special Olympics Service Ambassadors, Daniel, Kyle, Lauren and Zinyra (Z), who, this month, celebrate one year working at Chicago O'Hare International Airport as part of the United family.

This groundbreaking, inclusive employment program took off as a part of our ongoing partnership with Special Olympics, a community relationship that employees across the company hold close to heart. The original 'UA4' (as they call themselves) have become an integral part of the United team serving customers at O'Hare Airport. Even from behind their masks, their wide smiles and effervescent spirit exude and bring life to the service culture of excellence we strive towards every day.

"The UA4 are more than just customer service ambassadors. They are shining examples of how inclusion, accessibility and equity can have monumental impacts on the culture and service of a business and community," said Customer Service Managing Director Jonna McGrath. "They have forever changed who we are as a company. While they often talk about how United and this opportunity has changed their lives, they have changed ours in more ways than we can count."

In the two years of partnership with Special Olympics, United employees have volunteered over 10,500 hours of service at events around the world and donated over $1.2 million worth of travel to the organization.

"This inclusive employment program is what community partnerships, like ours with Special Olympics, are all about: collaborating to identify areas where the needs of the community intersect with the cultural and business opportunity, then creating the infrastructure and programming to bring the two together," said Global Community Engagement Managing Director Suzi Cabo. "Through this program, our goal is to show other companies that when you put a committed effort and focus towards inclusion and breaking down barriers, you transform lives. I challenge other business around the world to follow our lead in joining the Inclusion Revolution."

Check out the video below to hear from our Special Olympics Service Ambassadors firsthand.

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