After 110 years of aviation, Navy will finally have it’s first Black woman fighter pilot. Lt. Madeline Swegle is making history as she’s set to become the first Black female fighter pilot in the U.S. Navy. The chief of Naval Air Training announced the news on Twitter upon the completion of her training.
Swegle graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 2017, completed the Tactical Air (Strike) pilot training syllabus and is currently assigned to the Redhawks of Training Squadron 21 at a naval air station. Lt. Madeline Swegle will receive her gold wings in a ceremony from the Navy on July 31.
This accomplishment makes Swegle, a the first known Black woman who has been certified for the TACAIR mission, and she could go on to fly fighters such as the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet, EA-18G Growler or F-35C Joint Strike Fighter.
Pilots have said the Navy’s aviation community needs more diversity. In 2018 a investigation by military.com that Black are very rare in service, specifically in the fighter units. In 2018, the Navy had 765 female pilots.