A Message from Oscar Celebrating Women's History Month - United Hub
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A message from Oscar celebrating Women's History Month

By Oscar Munoz, Executive Chairman, United Airlines Holdings, Inc., March 01, 2017

The Wright Brothers — of course, everyone has heard of them; their names are synonymous with the invention of flight.

Yet, few people know that there was also a Wright Sister: Katharine Wright.

"If ever the world thinks of us in connection with aviation," said her brother Wilbur, "it must remember our sister." Katharine played an important role in her brothers' success, and she became one of the first women ever to fly, all while taking a leading role in the women's suffrage movement of the era.

Yet, as is too often the case, the enormous contributions that women like Katharine have played in the history of aviation become eclipsed in our memory. In addition to Katharine Wright, pioneers such as Blanche Scott, Bessie Coleman, and Amelia Earhart — among so many others — helped push humanity into the skies and further toward equality.

As America observes Women's History Month in March, we at United also celebrate the unique part we've played in the story of women in aviation. For example, it was an intrepid young reporter for the Chicago Herald-Examiner named Jane Eads who, on July 2, 1927, boarded a flight from Chicago to San Francisco. That flight would make her America's first official airline passenger, as well as the very first passenger of a carrier service that would eventually become United Airlines.

It was a woman named Ada Brown Greenfield, hired by United Airlines in 1940 as a flight attendant, who successfully organized her colleagues to form the world's first union of flight attendants. That organization has grown in to the Association of Flight Attendants that represents the interests of more than 50,000 airline professionals across the industry.

And it was a United Airlines pilot named M'Lis Ward who broke another barrier in aviation to become the first African American woman to earn the status of captain of a major US airline.

These women were not just pioneers of flight, but of social equality and progress as well.

Despite the vital role that women have played in the aviation and airline industry, there are still too few young women who choose to pursue careers in the field. We are determined to change that and make sure that more young women see the exciting future they can forge in this cutting-edge industry. That's why each year women in positions of leadership throughout the United family dedicate their time and talents in an effort to inspire the next generation of girls to explore their interests in the aviation field.

Our focus on recruiting, retaining, and empowering the talented women of our industry is an imperative and ongoing mission. It is one that has shown great success, especially thanks to the inspiring efforts of such accomplished aviators as Captain Bebe O'Neil, our Chief Pilot in Houston. "As a little girl, I watched Neil Armstrong walk on the moon," says Captain O'Neil. "It left such an indelible impression on me when they said he was an aerospace engineer and naval aviator, and it got me interested in aviation since childhood."

Neil Armstrong may have taken one small step for a man, but he inspired a lifelong path for Bebe as a young woman. Now, she is dedicated to inspiring and empowering a new generation of young women to reach for the skies.

We all have further to go before each of our sisters and daughters have the same opportunities for success as their brothers and sons. In whatever field their passion and talents lead them, we ought to take this month to rededicate ourselves to ensuring that the skies are truly the limit for young women everywhere.


In gratitude,

Oscar Munoz, CEO, United Airlines

United Cargo operates more than 11,000 cargo-only flights in one year

By The Hub team, March 19, 2021

On March 19, 2020, United operated its first flight carrying cargo without passengers on board. While the passenger cabin was empty, its cargo hold was completely full, carrying more than 29,000 pounds of commodities from Chicago O'Hare International Airport (ORD) to Frankfurt Airport (FRA).

A year later, United Cargo has operated more than 11,000 cargo-only flights carrying more than 570 million pounds of freight. To support the COVID-19 pandemic recovery efforts, United Cargo has also transported more than 113 million pounds of medical and pharmaceutical products on both cargo-only and passenger flights as well as approximately 10 million COVID-19 vaccines, providing global communities access to the items they have needed most.

10 tips for spring travel

By The Hub team, February 24, 2021

Whether you haven't flown with us for a while or just need a quick refresher before your spring trip, read this list of tips to know before your flight and arrive at the airport travel-ready:

1. Download the United app for contactless bag check, travel assistance and more

Before your flight, download the United app to view your flight status, check in, sign up for flight notifications, locate departure gates, access our free personal device entertainment when available and more. We've also updated our app with new features that can make your trip a little safer, including contactless bag check.

Don't forget to use Agent on Demand for help with any and all questions you may have before your flight. This new capability is available at all our U.S. hub airports and allows you to use your own mobile device to contact a customer service agent via phone, video or chat to help with day-of-travel questions while you're at the airport. Learn more about Agent on Demand here.

United joins UNICEF COVAX initiative

By The Hub team, February 19, 2021

This week, we were honored to become the first U.S. airline to join the UNICEF Humanitarian Airfreight Initiative to combat the COVID-19 pandemic by transporting the vaccine and other critically needed supplies to underserved areas of the globe.

"We are committed to helping the global community in any way we can, and we all must work together to do our part to bring this health and humanitarian crisis to an end," said Director of Cargo Specialty Products Manu Jacobs.

We will leverage our expertise to transport these critical pharmaceutical and healthcare shipments around the world safely, efficiently and expediently. We are proud to partner with the United Nations to support this global effort and provide equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines.

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