Olga E. Custodio is a Retired Captain from American Airlines with over 11,000 hours of flight time having flown the Boeing 727, Fokker 100, Boeing 757 and Boeing 767 to the Caribbean, Central America, South America, Europe, Mexico Canada and U.S. Her education and professional certificates include an Air Transport Pilot certificate (with several ratings) and a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Puerto Rico.
Olga is also a Retired Lt Colonel from the United States Air Force Reserves with 24 years of service. She was the first Hispanic female to graduate from USAF Undergraduate Pilot Training, the first female T-38 Undergraduate Pilot Training flight instructor at Laughlin AFB and the first female T-38 Pilot Instructor Training flight instructor at Randolph AFB.
In l987, Olga resigned her USAF regular commission and entered the USAF Reserves in order to fly for American Airlines. There she started her 20- year commercial airline pilot career. Starting out in the Boeing 727 as a flight engineer she moved up to First Officer based in Dallas-Ft Worth within a short time. Olga got her Air Transport Pilot certificate and became an American Airlines Captain a few years later. Her last 5 years with American and based in Miami she flew the Boeing-757 & 767 internationally.
On March 30, 2017, Olga was inducted into the San Antonio Aviation and Aerospace Hall of Fame for her professional accomplishments and as the first Latina pilot in the military and commercial aviation. She was first Latina inductee to the San Antonio Aviation and Aerospace Hall of Fame. Among the numerous recognitions Olga has received, she has been recognized twice by the Senate of Puerto Rico. In 2013 Olga was recognized as a “FIRST” at the VWISE (Veteran Women Igniting the Spirit of Entrepreneurship) Conference held in Chicago, IL. She was also recognized by Elizabeth Arden/Revista Imagen of Puerto Rico as one of the recipient of “La Belleza Inteligente 2001” award. She received the Sociedad Herencia Puertorriqueña CoquiSA Award in 2017 for having been recognized by the community at-large of her contributions in the three pillars of SHP’s mission, Culture, Education, and Community.
Olga is a member of the Women Military Aviators Association (charter member), the Women in Aviation, International, Inc., the Allied Pilots Association and the Order of Daedalians. Olga serves as Executive Director and Treasurer of the Women in Aviation International Alamo City Chapter; she is a Trustee of the Order of Daedalians Foundation serving on the Foundation’s Scholarship committee as well as Chair of Stinson’s Flight #2 Scholarship committee; she serves as a mentor with the Aviation Explorers organization in San Antonio and the School of Aeronautics of the Inter American University in Puerto Rico; is the Vice President of the Hispanic Association of Aviation and Aerospace Professionals (HAAAP), a non-profit organization she helped found in 2010 in San Antonio, Texas. Olga owned and founded Dragonfly Productions, LLC where she produced several personal documentaries for clients and organizations. She closed the company after 6+years of operations.
In the past Olga served on the Advisory Board for the Southwest Texas Junior College Career Pilot Technical Program and the San Antonio Museum of Art Lila Wallace-Reader’s Digest Fund Grant. She participated in a film produced by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) on Hispanics in Aviation shown at the Smithsonian Museum in Washington D.C. to encourage youngsters, especially Hispanics, to pursue aviation careers. She also participated in the KLRN PBS film “Wings over the Alamo”. She has volunteered her time as a speaker and role model at many schools, universities, corporations, military base groups and organizations like the Boy and Girl Scouts of America, encouraging and inspiring young women and men to reach for their dreams.
Olga is the Director and Founder of the Ballet Folklorico Boriken, a Puerto Rican folk dance group, in San Antonio, Texas since 1992. The group was founded to promote and preserve Olga’s cultural heritage in Texas and has participated in many cultural and educational events. Olga is also an active member (and a past president) of the Puerto Rican Heritage Society in San Antonio and has coordinated many cultural and educational activities for the community of San Antonio. Her love of music lead her to learn to play the “Cuatro”, an acoustic guitar like instrument and national instrument of Puerto Rico. She is a member and plays with Ecos de Puerto Rico, a “cuatro” orchestra in San Antonio, Texas.
Olga is married to Edwin Custodio, her best friend, supporter and advocate for everything she sponsors. They have two children, Marcia and Edwin II and one grandson, Jedi. Her parents, Ismael and Olga Nevarez live in San Antonio and she has a brother, Peter Nevarez who lives in Miami, Florida. Olga enjoys cooking, traveling and most of all spending time with her family.