Pageant queen becomes CAL’s fourth female flyer

| 04/10/2022 | 20 Comments
  • Cayman News Service
  • Cayman News Service
  • Cayman News Service
  • Cayman News Service
  • Cayman News Service

(CNS): Miss World Cayman Islands Leanni Tibbetts has become the fourth woman to become a pilot with Cayman Airways, having successfully completed the local airline’s recruitment and training programme. She and Nathan Myers, who both joined Cayman Airways in May and passed their flight training last month, are the newest first officers on the Twin Otter fleet operated by Cayman Airways Express.

“We are thrilled to welcome these two very talented and qualified Caymanian pilots to the Cayman Airways family and we look forward to watching them advance up the ranks to Captain of the B737-8 jet fleet,” said Captain Dave Scott, Executive VP of Operations and Chief Operations Officer.

Eight Caymanian pilots, including Myers and Tibbetts, were recently offered the position of first officer on the Twin Otter fleet, and the other six will be going through the required Ground School Training in the coming months. Acting Chief Pilot Captain Gary Hydes noted that the airline’s objective is for all new pilot hires to someday become B737-8 captains.

He explained that a pilot’s career progression at CAL starts with the entry-level pilot position of first officer on the Twin Otter fleet, followed by the first officer position on the Saab 340B+ fleet. They then progress to captain on the Twin Otter fleet, which is followed by movement to the B737-8 fleet as first officer, then captain on the Saab 340B+, and finally to captain on the B737-8 jets, which is considered the pinnacle of each CAL pilot’s career.

First Officer Myers said, “Ever since I was a young boy, it was a goal to fly for Cayman Airways, so now that I’m finally here it feels surreal, and I can’t believe it’s actually happening!” Myers has a Bachelor of Science degree in Aeronautics from Liberty University in Virginia and an Associates in Science degree from the University College of the Cayman Islands with a concentration in Physics and Environmental Science. He has a Commercial Multi-Engine Licence with Instrument Rating.

First Officer Tibbetts has a Bachelor of Science degree in Aviation Management with a Flight Minor in Aviation Environmental Science from Florida Institute of Technology (FIT). She has a Commercial Multi-Engine licence with Instrument Rating. She was also president of Women in Aviation at FIT and currently serves as a volunteer sub-lieutenant with the Cayman Islands Cadet Corps and is a volunteer call-taker with the National Emergency Operations Centre. First Officer Tibbetts was crowned Miss World Cayman Islands 2022 on 24 September.

She said getting to this point had been a long time coming. “I graduated in 2019 but Cayman Airways wasn’t hiring at the time, so I left the aviation field for a while until I heard that Cayman Airways was hiring pilots again, and clearly the love and passion is still there for flying,” she said.

Tibbetts is the fourth active female pilot at Cayman Airways overall, who make up 10% of the 44 pilots currently employed by the airline. The other female flyers are First Officer Giselah Ebanks, B737-8 fleet; Captain Crystal Godet, Twin Otter fleet; and First Officer Amber Hydes, Twin Otter fleet.

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Category: Local News, Travel

Comments (20)

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  1. misscayman21supporter says:

    Must say that Miss World showing up Miss Universe…

  2. Anonymous says:

    Hope Kenneth is paying attention!

  3. Anonymous says:

    Miss World Cayman showing Miss Universe Cayman how it’s done…

    • Caymanian says:

      @04/10/2022 at 10:49 pm. Is that comment really necessary? Can we please celebrate our own, instead of tearing them down?

  4. Anonymous says:

    She is a former civil servant. She joins miss word 2021 Kerford and first runner up Alyssa West 2021 who are all civil servants.

    Now if Miss Cayman universe was a civil servant we would not be in the mess that we are in.

  5. Anonymous says:

    She’s the absolute ideal for what these competitions should be now. Well done.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Wishing all the best to these accomplished young people and super congratulations to our 2022/2023 Miss World Cayman! This young lady is an example of the character and drive our local pageants should be promoting.

    Miss World Cayman Committee, you have done yourself proud with this lovely young lady!

    • Anonymous says:

      04 @ 4:31 pm – with respect I believe this young lady’s parenting and her own attributes are the reason for her success. Miss World Cayman Committee didn’t raise her nor mold her; they worked with what they had – a well balanced young lady with her goals already set.

      Similarly with the recent disgrace who is Miss Cayman Universe 2022: that Committee worked with what they had – Damaged Goods and they failed to recognize that fact!

  7. Anonymous says:


    Indeed, a truly remarkable achievement🎉

  8. Anonymous says:

    If beauty pageants are to continue, this young lady is the example of what participants should present – positive role models! Congrats Miss Tibbetts!!

    Unlike the recent Miss Cayman Universe! Poor role model!

  9. Anonymous says:

    A real beauty queen!!! Congrats!

  10. Anonymous says:

    How can anyone be angry about this?

    • Anonymous says:

      You might agree with the objectification of women but not all of us do.

      Is this really what we burnt our bras for?

      • Anonymous says:

        Don’t know why you did anything, but she’s done a lot. Probably enjoyed doing this pageant and has no need for a chip on her shoulder. Do you not support your sister’s many successes?

    • Anonymous says:

      There was no need to mention the Miss world given part of it given the story surrounding the current Universe. You just want want to start a fight on this medium. How some media has lost their creditability. You could simply report on tbe achievement of the young lady .

      • Anonymous says:

        That the other contestant is facing (yet another) criminal court appearance for which there was no disqualifying screening, for a position as an international paid ambassador for these islands – is both newsworthy, and meaningful juxtaposition to this role model’s success. Frankly, if that truth hurts anyone’s feelings she is free to surrender the crown at any time, which would be appropriate seeing as she was ineligible to receive it in the first place.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Well Done!

  12. Anonymous says:

    Huge congrats! been a pilot was always my dream.


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