“Universal Helicopters Newfoundland and Labrador LP is one of seven investments in CAPE Fund's portfolio. Promoting aboriginal representation at the management level is one of the pillar of CAPE Fund's mandate. We are proud of Christa's accomplishment and support this well-deserved recognition.” – Alex Farley – Director

Dream job — Labrador helicopter pilot makes national Top 20 under 40 list

Bonnie Learning 

Published on June 08, 2015

While most people generally don’t follow the career path they profess to love at the age of five, Christa Glover always knew she wanted to be helicopter pilot.

Christa Glover, chief pilot with Universal Helicopters in Happy Valley-Goose Bay, was recently named as one of the ‘Top 20 under 40’ by Helicopter Magazine.

“At my kindergarten graduation, I wore a little helicopter pendant,” she recalls. “And I was always getting helicopter pamphlets and stuff sent to me.”

Glover followed her dream of flying helicopters straight out of high school, graduating from Gander Flight Training with both her helicopter and fixed-wing license at the age of 21.

She was hired on with Universal Helicopters in Happy Valley-Goose Bay a decade ago, moving up the ranks from line pilot to chief pilot.

Now, a national magazine has recognized Glover for her work with Universal, naming her one of the ‘Top 20 under 40’ in the aerospace in industry.

The full listing will run in both Helicopter Magazine and Wings Magazine later this summer.

“I was pretty excited to get recognized,” she says when she was informed she had made the list.

“It’s always nice to get recognition for the hard work you put into your job.”

Glover says her job is always interesting, as she is always working on different jobs including everything from wildlife surveys and captures to forest fire suppression.

“You get to interact with a lot of people as a helicopter pilot,” she says. “It’s like a family, really.”

In the 50-year history of the company, Glover is actually the first ever-female pilot, recognition unto itself.

“We couldn’t be prouder of Christa’s accomplishments,” said Geoff Goodyear, president and CEO of Universal.

“I had the privilege of hiring her and it has worked out very well for us.”

Goodyear says Glover is not in her current position simply because she is a woman.

“It’s because of her acumen and competence,” he states. “She was very deserving of that award.”

Goodyear also says it’s nice to have the company and one if its own recognized countrywide.

“Being tucked back here on one of the bookends of the country, it’s great to make the national press every now and again — for good reasons.”

Matt Nichols, is the editor of Helicopter Magazine and Wings Magazine.

He said Glover had many attributes that led to her being named to the Top 20 under 40 list.

“Her career development, leadership in different areas; job performance, interaction with colleagues, going that extra mile, taking on more initiatives, raising her profile by attending industry events — Christa hits a lot of those areas,” he says.

Nichols said as a pilot at a major helicopter company, in an industry that is 96 per cent male, it was great to see Glover nominated for the list.

“It’s always wonderful to see an employee raise to that level of gender equity, she was an all-star candidate,” he says.

This is the third year Helicopter Magazine has run the Top 20 under 40 list, moving it from the Top 10 two years ago.

“Christa represents the type of person we have in the Canadian aerospace industry — an up and coming level of talent who will be the future of the industry,” he says. “Canada is ranked fifth in the aerospace industry in the world; we have the potential to improve that ranking with leaders like Christa.”

As for Glover, who hails from the small community of Charlottetown on Labrador’s southeast coast, she says never considered any other career path.”

“I got comments from a lot of people saying it could be intimidating,” she says. “But right from the time I went to flight school to coming to work for Universal, I’ve always been treated as one of the guys; it’s a very welcoming atmosphere.”