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November 08, 2008 - Wings Over the Rockies honors First Ladies of Air and Space

What: 6th annual Spreading Wings gala

Where: Wings Over the Rockies Air and Space Museum

When: Saturday, November 08, 2008

Time: 6 p.m.

Ticket Prices: $200 for non-members; $150 for members

Beneficiary: Programs and mission of the museum, educating and inspiring people of all ages through aerospace

Honoree(s): Eileen Collins, Patty Wagstaff, Emily Howell Warner

EMCEE: Amelia Earhart of 850 KOA and 9News

Presenting Sponsor(s): Lockheed Martin

Gala Chairperson(s): Cathey Finlon

Committee Members: Tom Allee, Greg Anderson, Cary Baird, Linda Chowry, Terry Combs, Jack Cronin, Cathy Dea, Gene & Judy Dessel, Dave Dickerson, David Ebershoff, Jo Farrell, Di Freeze, Kevin Hougen, Charlie Johnson, Lindsay Kough, Lynn Krogh, Harry Lewis, Peter Luce, Tom Luinstra, Joanne Maguire, Tom & Diane Marsh, Scott & Jody Nycum, Robert Olislagers, John Pritzlaff, Jody Randall, Holly Shilliday, Harold & Diane Smethills, Katie Stapleton, Terry Stevinson, Joe Thibodeau, Emily Howell Warner, Turner West, Pat & Janet Wiesner, Carl Williams, John Zayac

President(s): Greg Anderson

Invocation: Major General John France, COANG (Ret.)

Welcome: Board Chair Harold Smethills and Event Chair Cathey Finlon

Speaker: via video: Joanne Maguire, EVP of Lockheed Martin Space Systems Co.

Catering: Bistro Boys Catering

Music: Johnson String Quartet

Sponsors: PRESENTING SPONSOR: Lockheed Martin; PLATINUM SPONSOR: Terry and Linda Stevinson; GOLD SPONSORS: Centennial Airport, Chowdry Family Foundation, Larry Romrell, United Launch Alliance, Pat and Janet Wiesner; SILVER SPONSORS: Conoco Phillips, Eugene and Judith Dessel, Don Estey, First Western Trust Bank, Integrated Airline Services, Kaiser Permanente, Peter and Betsy Luce, George Lundeen of Lundeen Sculpture Ltd., Pinnacol Assurance, John Pritzlaff, Saunders Construction, University of Denver, University Advancement, USAero, Carl M. Williams; BRONZE SPONSORS: Apartment Finders International, Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp., Brown & Brown Insurance of Denver, Citywide Banks, Dr. Margaret Cozzens, Jack Cronin, Czarnowski Display Service, Inc., Peter and Cathy Dea, Denver jetCenter, Cathey and Richard Finlon, David Hurley, Law Offices of Joseph H. Thibodeau, Harry T. Lewis Jr., Lockton Companies of Colorado, Tom and Diane Marsh, Nycum Family Foundation, Andrea Parks, Qwest Communications International Inc., Shugart, Thomson & Kilroy P.C., Space Foundation, Sterling Ranch Colorado, Tisdale & Associates LLC, Emily and Julius Warner, Wells Fargo & Company, Xcel Energy, Zakhem Atherton; RAISE YOUR PADDLE FOR THE KIDS SPONSORS: Ellie Caulkins, George and Christina Caulkins, Jeppesen, Northrop Grumman Corporation.

Auctioneer: Doug Tisdale Esq.

Quote of the evening: "We can become whatever we dream." --Greg Anderson

Menu: Corn and ginger bisque sip, house cured salmon Gravlax, savory fennel Biscotti, fall greens, light lemon chive dressing; black truffle oil marinated beef tenderloin, Bordeaux Glace de Viande accompanied with horseradish potato and carrot puree; saute of garlic and spinach; dark chocolate tower with Grand Marnier mousse accompanied with lemon creme cake garnished on a raspberry painted plate

Attendance: 800

Attire: cocktail or aviator

Blacktie Photos by: Pamela Cress

 The Ninety-Nines female pilot club members Margaret Rothermel, left, honoree Emily Howell Warner, Peggy Long and International President Susan Larson
The Ninety-Nines female pilot club members Margaret Rothermel, left, honoree Emily Howell Warner, Peggy Long and International President Susan Larson

The country might not have been ready for a female vice president, but the women being recognized at the Spreading Wings gala have already forged their way in creating pathways for women in aerospace with style, panache and excellence. These extraordinary women were honored at a Wings Over the Rockies Air and Space Museum bash on Saturday night, and the excitement was palpable.

Guests mingled in the huge museum foyer, filled with gawk-inspiring planes from times gone by, before settling down to dinner, masterfully created by Bistro Boys Catering. The beef tenderloin did not even need a knife and just melted on the tongue, as guests were able to dine with the musical accompaniment of the Johnson String Quartet.

Judy Moore delivered a memorable performance of the National Anthem, which set the stage for a spectacular program to match the spectacular talents of the women pioneers being honored. Chairman of the Board, Harold Smethills, said a few words of welcome, followed by a Museum update by President/CEO Greg Anderson. "We can become whatever we dream," said Anderson in speaking of the three honorees. "We can only hope the achievement and potential in this room is mindful of those who follow."

Event Chairwoman Cathey Finlon took the stage to welcome everyone, followed by a poignant video message from Joanne Maguire, EVP of Lockheed Martin Space Systems Co. and a lively auction orchestrated by lawyer-turned-auctioneer-sometimes Doug Tisdale. Then the crowd was treated to a presentation by Marcia Foster, Walnut Hills Elementary teacher and WASP teacher/trainer with Julia Kremer, a 6th-grader from West Middle School and Lara Kremer, 3rd-grader from Walnut Hills Elementary.

Then came the awards and tributes to the three outstanding honorees, who humbly accepted their awards but the pride and passion in their eyes was evident. Each has established new territory for women in aerospace and developed a record of greatness in her chosen career.

Eileen Collins became the first woman space shuttle pilot in 1995, when she piloted Discovery on mission STS-63. Wagstaff became the first woman to earn the title of U.S. National Aerobatic Champion in 1991, and remains one of few pilots to have earned the title three times. Warner became the first woman pilot hired by a U.S. scheduled airline when she began flying for Frontier Airlines in 1973, and later became the first woman captain for a U.S. air carrier.

“We are honored beyond measure to recognize these three and advance the great contributions that women are increasingly making in all aspects of aviation and space,” said Greg Anderson, Wings’ president & CEO. “Rarely has any organization had the opportunity to honor the likes of this group.”

Wings Over the Rockies Air & Space Museum is committed to meeting the educational needs of the community by inspiring and educating the coming generations of aviators, astronauts, scientists and leaders. They have some unique and challenging educational programs, including:

  • Onsite Tours & Programs, including time in the flight simulator lab and the opportunity to assemble balsa airplanes The Museum has unprecedented displays of aircraft, space and rocketry, avionics and uniforms and restoration projects.
  • Project Pilot
    Students learn the basics of flight planning and navigation, airplane instruments and control surfaces, and aviation weather in the student-friendly class-room. They plan a specific mission and then fly that mission using the high-end flight simulators in our computer lab.
  • Summer Camp @ Wings
    Wings offers one week-long summer camp each year. Each camp concludes with the opportunity for students to experience flight in a real airplane, thanks to the qualified pilots of EAA Chapter 301.
  • Boy and Girl Scout Badge and Patch Programs
    Both Boy and Girl Scouts can earn aviation badges through Wings’ onsite program. Scouts meet the requirements of the aviation badge by touring the Museum, learning to complete a flight plan, and flying a mission in our advanced simulator lab.
  • Top Gun for Tots
    Top Gun for Tots allows pre-kindergarten children to experience the massive size and wide variety of real planes and many other captivating experiences. As a final topper for this program they will escort the children into the helicopter cockpit.
  • Science of Flight Teacher Workshops
    Each workshop is a two-day adventure in aviation education. 
  • KidSpace
    This outreach program offers hands-on aviation activities to kids of all ages. They travel to fly-ins and airshows throughout the state and partner with local volunteers to provide this exciting educational program at their airports.

For further information about tours, please contact the Education Department at 303-360-5360 ext. 116, or log on to for general information.

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