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Congressman Johnson Holding Black History Program: Blacks in Aviation: Past and Present

Stonecrest, Georgia – On Wednesday, February 23, Congressman Hank Johnson (GA-04) is hosting his 2022 Black History Program entitled: “Blacks in Aviation: Past and Present.”

The program will honor the history of Black pioneers for their courage and perseverance that paved the way for later generations to pursue careers in aviation. It will also explore how young aviators are making it in the world of aviation today – to share their stories and expose young people in the audience to careers aviation.

Congressman Johnson will spotlight and honor three now-deceased Tuskegee Airmen from the 4th Congressional district: Mr. Val Archer, Mr. Andrew Keyes and Mr. Vernon Sport.

He will also interview four aviators who followed in their illustrious footsteps: Master Sargeant W.O. Smith, one of 300 Tuskegee Airmen; Mrs. Sheila Chamberlain, first Black woman combat pilot; Mr. Barrington Irving, who holds the record for youngest to pilot a plane solo around the world; Mr. Charles Flanigan, first African American pilot for Delta Airlines.

The program is open and available to the public by logging onto the Zoom link below at 1 PM. Local public schools will also be streaming the program live for their students as part of Black History Month.

  • WHO: Congressman Hank Johnson (GA-04); pioneers in aviation, past and present;
  • WHAT: Congressman Hank Johnson’s 2022 Black History Program entitled: Blacks in Aviation, Past and Present;
  • WHEN: Wednesday, February 23, 2022, from 1:00 pm to 2:15 pm;
  • WHERE: Zoom at 1:00 pm: and rebroadcasted on Congressman Johnson’s Facebook page:;

The Congressman will also announce he is re-introducing his Minorities in Aviation Education Act, which would create a grant program aimed at improving the preparation and representation of minorities in aviation-related fields. The new grant program, administered by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), will be named for Bessie Coleman, an American aviator and the first Black woman to earn a pilot’s license.

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