Lieutenant-Colonel Maryse Carmichael is an accomplished pilot who became the first woman in Canadian history selected to fly with the famous Snowbirds Aerobatic Team. In November 2000 she was chosen to fly #3 position with the 431 Air Demonstration Squadron.
Born in Quebec City in 1971, Lt.-Col Carmichael served as Air cadet from 1984 to 1988. She joined the Canadian Forces in 1990 and completed pilot training in January 1994...receiving her wings in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan. She then served as Flying Instructor and the School Operations Officer and Standards Officer. In Greenwood, Nova Scotia, Lt.-Col Carmichael was with the 434 Combat Support Squadron ~ flying the Bombardier-Canadair CE-144 and CC-144 Challenger Aircraft. Before joining the Snowbirds, she was in the VIP transport role with 412 Transport Squadron in Ottawa, Ontario and flew such notables as Prime Minister Jean Chretien and Governor General Adrienne Clarkson around the world.
While flying with the Snowbirds, Maryse was promoted to the rank of Major and became the team's Executive Officer. After her stint with the legendary Snowbirds, she began working as Deputy Wing Operations Officer at 3 Wing Bagotville. She was named commander of the Snowbirds in 2010...becoming the first female pilot to lead the famous aerobatic squad.
Lt.-Col is married to Major Scott Greenough, a Canadian Forces fighter pilot...they have two daughters. As of May 2010, Lt.-Col Carmichael had accumulated 3200 hours of jet flying time.
Early Interest: Maryse Carmichael has been fascinated by aviation for as long as she can remember. While attending the Bagotville Airshow at the age of 16, she recalls being mesmerized by the feats and precision and discipline. As soon as she was able, she followed in her three brothers' footsteps and joined the Royal Canadian Air Cadets with 630 Squadron in Quebec City...with one single goal in mind: to fly! At age 16, she realized her dream and was awarded scholarships for both her glider and private pilot wings.
Aviation Training Flights: Maryse soon continued her aviation adventures as a military pilot, joining the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) in 1990. Over her 22 year career, she accumulated nearly 3,500 hours on three main aircraft types...the 'Tutor' jet trainer...the 'Challenger' (VIP transport aircraft)...and the 'Hercules' Tactical airlift transport.
Achievement: In November 2000, Maryse made history when she was selected, after a grueling competition, to fly with 431 Air Demonstration Squadron, the Canadian Forces' Snowbirds. She was the Snowbirds' first female pilot and the first in the world to fly with a Jet Demonstration Team!
More Challenging Positions: After her tour of duty with the Snowbirds, Lt.-Col Carmichael was assigned more challenging goals within the Air Force...both at the tactical and operational levels. Specifically, she served as the Operations Officer on 436 Transport Squadron...and as Deputy Wing Operations Officer at 3 Wing Bagotville.
In May 2010, Maryse was appointed as the Commanding Officer of the Snowbirds ~ another world's first for a female aviator. She considers her time leading the men and women of RCAF's Snowbirds to be the pinnacle of her career.
Awards: The recipient of many, Maryse was recognized in 2006 in the Top 100 as one of Canada's Most Powerful Women by the Women Executive Network. Now retired from the RCAF, Maryse shares her passion for aviation with her husband...Lieutenant-Colonel Greenough...and RCAF fighter pilot and their two daughters.
Maryse's Keynote Presentations
bring a fresh and insightful perspective to Leadership.
Her personal experiences in high-stress situations, coupled with unique perspectives on team dynamics (from a woman's perspective) offer an insightful view into leadership effectiveness. Perhaps, surprisingly, when all is said and done, her underlying message is not one of gender...
but one of inspirational leadership rooted in respect, teamwork and trust.
Discover More Online:
Canada's Air Force ~ Snowbirds: the official website from the Department of National Defence.
Career Options for Women ~ Maryse Carmichael (from the TV series Career Options).
Official Report 1405 Number 077 ~ regarding accomplishments of Maryse Carmichael.
She's the Boss: Snowbirds' first female pilot to lead aerobatic squad ~ the Globe and Mail, May 2010.
Woman Flies High as new Snowbirds' Leader ~ CBC News, 02 May 2010.
Words of Wisdom
“A great gift has been made to each of us…
the privilege of living in the world for a short span of time
and the opportunity of doing our part to inspire civilization,
to advance knowledge…both scientific knowledge of man
and the wisdom from above.
This opportunity should be regarded as our sacred trust.”
Compiled by Merle Baird-Kerr...March 28, 2015
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