Captain Julie Clark Named Recipient of 2023 Katharine Wright Trophy

Aerobatic Aviator recognized for inspiring the next generation to pursue careers in aviation.

Washington, DC, August 16, 2023 – The National Aeronautic Association (NAA) and the Ninety-Nines, International Organization of Women Pilots are pleased to announce that Julie Clark has been selected as the recipient of the 2023 Katharine Wright Memorial Trophy.

“The Katherine Wright Award means so much to me because I love to inspire and encourage young aviators,” said Clark. “I know that Katherine Wright was a true supporter of her famous brothers’ endeavors, and always put their activities ahead of her own. She was a real compassionate and loyal sister! How very honored I am to be selected for this amazing award.”

Clark is being honored for her significant contributions to the art and sport of aviation, the success of others and the promotion of aerospace education for more than a half-century.

“Throughout her life, Julie Clark has shown dedication, remarkable skill, and a passion for excellence,” said Ninety-Nines, International Organization of Women Pilots President Robin Hadfield. “Her aviation journey stands as an example of what can be achieved when one combines talent with determination, making her a true inspiration to all.”

Julie Clark is widely known for her 40-year airshow career as well as one of the first female pilots to fly for a major airline. Clark is an original charter member of The International Society of Women Airline Pilots (ISA+21). Always going above and beyond, she contributes her knowledge and support to the International Council of Air Shows (ICAS) by serving as a member of the Board, chair of the Regional Satellite Chapters, and as an Aerobatic Competency Evaluator. Additionally, Julie serves as a mentor of the EAA’s “Women Soar” program. She also personally mentors young aerobatic pilots seeking a career as an air show performer and inspires countless other young people to pursue a career in aviation.

“From the start of Julie’s aviation career to the present day, she has constantly sought ways to lift and inspire others,” said NAA President & CEO Greg Principato. “Many talk about giving back, Julie defines the term. She is the definition of a Katharine Wright Trophy recipient, great in her own right and making all others around her better. It will be our honor to present the Katharine Wright Trophy to Julie Clark.”

The Katharine Wright Trophy was established in 1981 by the Gates Learjet Corporation. The award was named in honor of Orville and Wilbur Wright’s sister, Katharine, who not only provided financial support to her brothers’ endeavors, but also emotional and public support to her brothers as well. The Katharine Wright Trophy is awarded annually in partnership with the Ninety-Nines, International Organization of Women Pilots to an individual who has contributed to the success of others or made a personal contribution to the advancement of the art, sport, and science of aviation and space flight over an extended period of time.

Members of the Katharine Wright Selection Committee:

  • Nicole Alexander, President, Wichita Aero Club
  • Robin Hadfield, President, The Ninety-Nines
  • Jill Meyers, 2022 Katharine Wright Recipient
  • Pat Prentiss, Director, The Ninety-Nines
  • Brian Sandberg, President, Society of Experimental Test Pilots
  • Barbara Walter-Phillips, 2019 Katharine Wright Recipient

The National Aeronautic Association is a non-profit membership organization devoted to fostering opportunities to participate fully in aviation activities and to promoting public understanding of the importance of aviation and space flight to the United States. NAA is the caretaker of some of the most important aviation awards in the world and certifies all national aviation records set in the United States. For information, visit