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Bettina Inés Kadner Schilling

Date of investiture:
24 May 2019
Cristina Casamitjana
Area of knowledge:

The pilot Bettina Kadner, the first woman in Spain and the second in Europe to captain commercial flights, took part in setting up CESDA (Centre for Advanced Aviation Studies), an institution affiliated to the URV that teaches the official qualification for Commercial Aviation Pilots and Air Operations. Born in Madrid on 1 December 1946, Bettina had longed to be a pilot ever since the age of 11 when she had seen her first aeroplanes in the airport with her mother.

During her acceptance speech, Kadner made a brief summary of the milestones she had achieved in the course of her professional life, the people who had helped her and the pioneering women who had preceded her in the history of aviation.

Kadner began her career on 1 October 1969 as the co-pilot of a Fokker 27 for the company Spantax and, in so doing, she became the first woman in the country to fly a commercial passenger plane. And for the next 15 years she was the only one. The first woman to fly a commercial plane in Europe had been Turi Wideroe, just one year before Kadner.

Throughout her career she was constantly concerned about training for pilots. The result of this concern was that, in the 1990s, she was one of the driving forces behind the School of Civil Aviation Pilots and, subsequently, one of the founders of CESDA in Reus, which began operations in 2001. As pointed out in her acceptance speech, Kadner and the others involved in the project were convinced that "the system needed pilots with a specific university degree, not just pilots who were university graduates".

Bettina Inés Kadner Schilling's CV