Like most pilots, Pua has had a fascination with airplanes and aviation since she was a kid growing up in Hawaii. One of her fondest memories is having her dad take her down to Honolulu International Airport every Sunday afternoon and watch big jets take off from the reef runway.
After graduating from the University of Southern California with a journalism degree, she decided to get her feet wet in the aviation industry by becoming a flight attendant at Hawaiian Airlines. And while she loved the lifestyle and travel adventures it provided, what she really wanted was to be in the flight deck flying the plane – not serving people in the back. After an opportunity one day to fly around the island with the Hawaiian Airlines CEO in the company’s very first plane – a restored 1929 Bellanca CH-300 Pacemaker, she was hooked – she needed to make this dream a reality.
She finally took the leap to pursue her true dream of becoming an airline pilot right here at Sierra Charlie Aviation and with the help of her instructor Tom, achieved her private pilot, instrument, commercial and CFI ratings. Its been so rewarding for her to now work where she trained and experience not only the incredible growth at SCA, but also to see students go from their very first discovery flight to now being commercial pilots.
Pua loves sharing her passion for aviation with her students and likes showing them how fun flying can be. Her favorite place to fly for a day trip and lunch is Sedona. And one her favorite flights ever was taking off over the beach and ocean in San Diego and landing in the snow at Flagstaff just a few hours later. She believes that flying opens up your world to experiences and adventures that wouldn’t be attainable any other way.
“What I love most about being a flight instructor is helping students pursue their dreams of becoming pilots.There are so many huge milestones in one’s aviation career, whether it be a first solo, a passed written test, or a successful check ride – it’s so fun to be a part of it all! Flying is something that very few people will ever get a chance to do so its something I never take for granted. I get to wake up and go fly airplanes every day! How cool is that?