Aerospace Engineer. USAF Veteran. STEM Champion.
For her lifelong support of STEM education and her contributions to the aviation/aerospace industry, Jill has received several awards including the San Diego Chamber of Commerce 2016 Women in Leadership Award and the AIAA 2018 Outstanding Enhancement of the Image of the Aerospace Profession Award. She was named as a Fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society in 2019 and was elected to the University of Texas at Austin’s Academy of Distinguished Alumni in 2021. And, in a you-can’t-make-this-up moment, Mattel tapped Jill in 2019 to promote STEM careers for girls in partnership with the Columbia Memorial Space Center and “Barbie’s DreamHouse” in Southern California.
While serving in the United States Air Force, Jill operated and maintained communications systems worldwide, supporting Strategic Air Command, U.S. Space Command, and the United States Air Forces in Europe. After transitioning out of the military, she worked for several companies including Boeing, Raytheon, and Northrop Grumman, on programs including the NATO Airborne Warning and Control System, Global Hawk, and the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter jet. Jill was an independent consultant for four years, providing her aviation management expertise to companies and non-profit organizations around the world.
In 2017, Jill supported the first-ever female commercial pilot from Afghanistan, former refugee Shaesta Waiz, in her dream of flying solo around the world in a single-engine Beechcraft Bonanza, managing logistics for the global flight and planning all 32 outreach events in 14 countries. Jill also advises film and TV projects, and is very proud of being the consultant to Indie Atlantic Films for their award-winning 2019 documentary film Fly Like A Girl.
Jill recently took on a new position as a senior manager for the National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO), a facility of the National Science Foundation, co-managing the Next Generation Very Large Array (ngVLA) project. This new radio telescope array will consist of more than 200 antennas spread across North America to address some of the biggest science questions that radio astronomy can help answer.
Shifting the Balance: Women in Aviation
Pilot and Aerospace Engineer Jill Meyers takes the audience on a ride through history, celebrating trailblazing women in the fields of aviation and aerospace around the world--from Bessie Coleman, the first woman of African American descent to obtain a pilot’s license, to the unsung WASP (Women Air Force Service Pilots) of WWII, to Colonel Nicole Malachowski, the first female Air Force Thunderbird pilot---sharing their personal stories, challenges, and triumphs. For student presentations, Jill also explores the dynamic career paths that are possible through solid STEM education, from flying airplanes to designing spacecraft, to building and fixing fighter jets.
Beyond the fields of aviation and aerospace, this show is about connecting with and following your dreams.
Photos: courtesy Jill Meyers