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Get to Know NATA’s Juliet Jordan

NATA’s Jenny Ann Urban caught up with Juliet Jordan, NATA’s new Managing Director of Industry Affairs and Innovation, to learn more about her impressive background and unique perspective on the aviation industry.

Jenny: What originally got you interested in the aviation industry?

Juliet: My interest in airplanes began at a young age when I saw my Dad watching World War II aviation documentaries. He was always excited about the big planes on television, and they spiked my curiosity almost immediately. I also attended state fair air shows in upstate NY with my family, where we would watch military-based performances.

While in college, my true passion for aviation piqued when I was seeking a part-time job. I saw a job posting for an FBO Safety Administrative Analyst position. At the time, I had no idea what an FBO was, what an aviation Safety Admin Analyst did, how to read a compass, or understand the phonetic alphabet. All I knew was that the job sounded exciting and interesting, but that was enough. I submitted my resume and called the hiring manager to tell him that if he gave me a chance by hiring me, I wouldn’t let him down. I kept my promise, jumping into the role and broader industry with two feet and never looking back.

After realizing that I had a passion for aviation, I centered my core studies on aviation, specifically sustainable aviation fuel, aviation programing, and airport analyses.

Jenny: What was your first full time job related to aviation?

Juliet: Two days after graduating with my Master of Public Administration degree from Cornell University, I packed up my entire life and headed from New York to Austin, Texas, to begin working as a Policy and Government Affairs Officer for a leading drone manufacturing, inspection, and monitoring company. In this role, I was introduced to the wonderful sphere of aviation regulations. I had the opportunity to work closely with the Federal Aviation Administration while helping clients solve problems in all things related to unmanned aviation.

Jenny: What excited you about the aviation industry?

Juliet: It’s historic, but so new at the same time. You’re never bored while working in aviation. There is always a problem to solve and a handshake to give.

Jenny: What is the most rewarding part about working in aviation?

Juliet: Seeing legislation get passed in favor of the position you and your team advocated for is gratifying. Also, realizing the positive impact of your efforts both on specific stakeholders as well as the industry overall. Being at NATA, you play a key role in shaping the industry, because what you are advocating for can come to fruition and benefit companies across the membership platform. It’s great seeing everyone at NATA work toward common goals.

Jenny: What is the biggest challenge for those looking to jumpstart their own career in aviation?

Juliet: The biggest challenge I see is getting over the intimidation factor as a new person interested in the aviation industry. If you haven’t been introduced to the vast sectors that make up the aviation ecosystem, you often think that there are only two options open for you: 1) to be a pilot or flight attendant, or 2) a commercial aviation agent. However, the reality is there are so many more roles that make up the community, such as mechanics, ground support crew, FBO and GA-based roles, trade associations, education, management, etc. Various opportunities are available that can fit anyone interested in aviation.

By Jenny Ann Urban, NATA’s Managing Director of Air Charter & Maintenance


Welcome to the Aviation Business Journal, the official publication of the National Air Transportation Association (NATA).