RB First female Captain receives honor

RB First female Captain receives honor

25 September 2018, 1:21 PM

Royal Brunei Airlines (RB) is pleased to announce that, Captain Sharifah Czarena Suriany Syed Hashim, has been honored as a 2018 inductee into the International Forest of Friendship (IFOF) for her being the first female captain on any flag carrier in Southeast Asia. Captain Czarena attended the induction ceremony held in Atchison, Kansas, USA on 22nd September. She will be inducted alongside women and men who have given dedicated service, leadership, friendship, and support to help others achieve aviation goals; those who have made significant contributions to the development of aviation and those who have established aviation records.

To commemorate Captain’s Czarena induction, the IFOF have planted a tree in Brunei’s honor to add to the Forest with trees representing all the 50 states of the United States and 36 countries around the world, including a “moon tree” grown from a seed taken to the moon on the Apollo 14 space mission in 1971. Together they bring to life the Forest’s goal of “World Friendship through Flight”. Captain Czarena also delivered a Brunei Darussalam flag which will be carried by children during a parade of flags as part of the ceremonies and placed bedside the Brunei tree, a “Butterfly Magnolia”, a close relative to Brunei’s national flower, the Bunga Simpur, but better suited to the climate in Atchison.

RB’s Chief Executive Officer Karam Chand said, “We are extremely proud of Captain Czarena to receive the honor from the International Forest of Friendship. As RB’s first female captain and in Southeast Asia, she is truly an inspiring role model for young Bruneians to show that they can achieve their dreams with hard work and dedication. She is a valuable asset to RB and we look forward to support her further to reach greater heights in her career with RB.”

“To be given the opportunity to be inducted as role of Forest Honoree by the International Forest of Friendship is both exciting and extremely humbling.  With over 1300 honorees who have made an impact on aviation and aerospace in one way or another, to have Brunei Darussalam become a part of this with our very own tree is a very proud moment indeed.  I am looking forward to the celebrations this weekend in Atchison, Kansas, USA,” said Captain Czarena.

In March a delegation from the Forest traveled to Brunei to present Captain Czarena with a certificate honoring her selection.  The ceremony on 22nd September will complete her induction process.

“The International Forest of Friendship will also recognize Royal Brunei Airlines for having the first female captain in any flag carrier in Southeast Asia and for the all-female aircrew that Captain Czarena led to Jeddah on Brunei Darussalam’s national day in 2017,” said the International Forest of Friendship in a statement.

This year’s event will be the 42nd anniversary conducted by IFOF. The Forest is a living, growing memorial to the world history of aviation and aerospace with the theme for 2018, “Security and Solace Through Flight”, emphasizing military aviators and organizations. The Forest is nestled on a gentle slope overlooking Lake Warnock, on the outskirts of Atchison, which is also the birthplace of Amelia Earhart- the first female aviator to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean.

The Forest was a gift to America on the Nation’s 200th birthday (1976) from the City of Atchison (Amelia Earhart’s birthplace) and the Ninety-Nines, the International Organization of Women Pilots.  Among the more than 1300 honorees are such internationally recognized flyers as Amelia Earhart, Charles Lindbergh, the Wright Brothers, Sally Ride, Eileen Collins, and Chuck Yeager.