Each year, Women's History Month offers an important opportunity for us to shine a light on the extraordinary legacy of trailblazing American Women and girls who have built, shaped and improved upon our Nation. Throughout American history, women and girls have made vital contributions, often in the face of discrimination and undue hardship. Courageous women marched for and won the right to vote, campaigned against injustice, shattered countless barriers, and expanded the possibilities of American life. Our history is also replete with examples of the unfailing bravery and grit of women in America, particularly in times of crisis and emergency. During Women's History Month, let us honor the accomplished and visionary women who have helped build our country, including those whose contributions have not been adequately recognized and celebrated. And let us pay tribute to the trailblazers from the recent and distant past for daring to envision a future for which no past precedent existed, and for building a Nation of endless possibilities for all of its women and girls.
In honor of Women's History Month, as well as Frontier’s commitment to inclusivity, we are celebrating women by spotlighting the accomplishments and contributions of our female employees.
Director, Airport Planning Finance, Denver Headquarters
How many years have you worked with Frontier? 7 years in June
Can you share a little about your career path? I was recruited out of grad school by US Airways and worked in their Corporate FP&A department as a Sr. Financial Analyst for 2.5 years. I then came to work for Frontier as the Manager of FP&A for almost two years before changing departments and moving to airport Planning. In airport Planning, I started as a Regional Manager, worked my way up to Sr. Manager and am now a Director.
Who or what inspired you to pursue an aviation career? My aviation career is a happy accident. I accepted a job with US Airways right out of grad school because I liked to travel for fun and the flight benefits were great. I took the job thinking I would get a couple of years’ experience to build my resume and then move on to something different. But after my first airport tour that also included seeing a hangar, engine repair shop, and FAA Ramp Tower, I was captivated by the complexities and intricacies involved just to get one single airplane off the ground. I have been in love with the industry ever since.
What motivates or inspires you to serve in your role? What I love about my job is that I am constantly compelled to learn new things and develop new strategies to keep up with the ever-changing landscape of the aviation industry. As Frontier continues to grow, so does the challenge of my team’s job to ensure we have enough gates and space to be able to run an efficient, low-cost operation at our airports. Working as a team and having the privilege of leading an amazing team is also what motivates me to do the best job I can.
Are there particular aspects of Frontier as a company that stand out to you? I enjoy working for a company that has very clear values and company mission so that no matter which department you work for, we are all working together to achieve the same goal.
Advice to others? Be sure to venture outside your comfort zone, it’s the best way to challenge yourself and cultivate your skills. And always remember that a little perseverance goes a long way to achieving greater professional success.
Favorite Frontier destination: Boise, ID (where my family is)
Favorite plane tail? Powder the Polar Bear
Director, Flight Schedules Commercial, Denver Headquarters
How many years have you worked with Frontier? 17 years
Can you share a little about your career path? I started at AMR as a ramp contractor for Frontier in 1997. After three years of working ramp for Frontier and then America West, I left the industry but always dreamed of returning. My dream came true when I returned to Frontier in 2004 as an Operations Agent/Load planner and cross-trained for Ramp and Customer Service. I decided then to take my career to headquarters and joined the Network Scheduling team in 2009. I have worked on the Network team for 12 years and became the Director of Scheduling two years ago.
Who or what inspired you to pursue an aviation career: I did not set out for an aviation career but once I joined this industry, I was hooked.
What motivates or inspires you to serve in your role? I am very loyal and dedicated to the airline industry and its success. After working at Frontier through bankruptcy, two buyouts and now COVID, I have a deep passion to ensure that Frontier continues to succeed. My team has a unique role in which we ensure that a profitable network is created while making it operationally successful. The Network Team is exemplary in its drive, positivity and creativity. Every day they inspire me to be the best version of me for Frontier, for them and myself.
Are there particular aspects of Frontier as a company that stand out to you? I have worked for many versions of Frontier. I have always admired Frontier’s nimbleness and flexibility. In my opinion, no other airline has rewritten its path to a new future and had it be more successful than the version before, multiple times. I’m most proud of the Frontier of today that is forging a path of enabling others to travel who couldn’t afford to before.
Advice to others? Find your passion, your “why” and allow that to push you through any challenges big and small, have pride in what you do, take chances and be courageous. Above all, don’t be afraid to adjust and absorb change. Look at it as a challenge and embrace it.
Favorite Frontier destination? Phoenix
Favorite plane tail? Currently, it is Shelly the Sea Turtle; but of all Frontier tails past and present my favorite will always be AC939: Jim, Joe, Jay and Gary, the Singing Penguins.
Aircrew Program Designee (APD), Line Check Airman (LCA), Simulator Check Airman (SCA), Instructor and Airbus Captain
Location? Denver Airbus Training Center and I am also a Captain based in LAS when I fly the line.
How many years at Frontier? I have worked at Frontier for 17 years and I have been a professional pilot for the past 25 years.
Career path and inspiration? I grew up in an airline family, my dad, step-dad, uncle’s, brother and cousin are all current or retired airline pilots at major airlines. You can say its in my blood. My step-dad taught me how to fly in high school and I went on to college and received a degree in aviation from Metropolitan State University of Denver. I started out flying at a regional carrier and then went on to fly for a legacy carrier before getting furloughed after 9/11 and subsequently hired by Frontier in 2003.
Motivations? I have been in the training department for 5 years and have been able to train our new hire pilots as well as hold the standard in the simulator. I believe we have a fantastic and very experienced pilot group and training department. We are a tight knit group and continue to maintain the friendly and professional culture that Frontier is known for and it's a privilege to work with all of them on a daily basis. My husband motivated me to get into the training department, he is an Instructor/Evaluator at another airline. Since I took the first step to become an instructor and evaluator I have never looked back. It is always more interesting than I can imagine. I am part of a small group of just 3 women at Frontier that do what I do as an evaluator.
Aspects that stand out? The comment I hear over and over again, is that Frontier has a great culture. Going to work is always fun. I love the livery and the originality of our paint jobs and the corporate brand that is Frontier.
Advice and favorite destinations? Without question my favorite layovers are San Diego and Seattle. I have to admit that I am a little bias when it comes to Seattle because that is also where I live and I love the Northwest. My advice to others would be, “if you love what you do, you’ll never work a day in your life.” That’s how I feel about my career.
Favorite plane tail? It was Sarge on aircraft 932 but that aircraft is no longer in service with us. My husband and I picked that plane up from Hamburg, Germany in 2004, along with several other coworkers. My husband and I got engaged on that trip and have been happily married for over 16 years and have 3 amazing kids! My favorite new plane is any 321. Those are sweet planes to fly!
Alexandra “Allie” Sotelo
First Officer, Flight Operations, PHL
How many years have you worked with Frontier? Over 1 Year
Can you share a little about your career path? I started flying lessons when I was 15 years old and worked at a flying club on a military base as I pursued my ratings and finished high school. I kept earning my ratings as I earned my bachelor’s degree, worked at an FBO, and flight instructed. When I started flying at my first airline, I met my husband and flew my grandparents on a couple of our flights - the same grandfather that sparked my interest in aviation. Through my experiences I acquired at the regionals as a Captain, instructor, and training manager, I was welcomed into the Frontier family in 2019.
Who or what inspired you to pursue a career in aviation? My grandfather always loved airplanes and earned his private pilot license. Although I never flew with him, I definitely felt his joy in aviation and feel as though that is what sparked my interest in flying as a young girl.
What motivates or inspires you to serve in your role? Other than the love of flying, I hope to show my kids that they can do anything that they put their minds to when they work hard and pursue their dreams.
Are there particular aspects of Frontier as a company that stand out to you? Everyone I’ve interacted with throughout our company is personable and friendly. It feels like a family.
Advice to others? Sometimes the path to where you want to end up has some unexpected turns in it, but keep pursuing your dreams.
Favorite Frontier destination? San Diego
Favorite plane tail? Crockett the Raccoon
Director, Airport Customer Service, Denver
How many years have you worked with Frontier? 23 years
Can you share a little about your career path? I started my aviation career with Aspen Airways in 1979. I worked in reservations, then transferred to the airport where I obtained experience on the ramp and customer service. I joined Frontier in 1998 as the supervisor of Customer Service. Shortly after, I moved to the manager role and then moved to the office where I had the responsibility to develop our Emergency Response Plan. I’ve been in my current role as the Director, Airport Customer Service for six years.
What motivates or inspires you to serve in your role? When I joined Frontier Airlines in 1998, I knew this was a place I wanted to be. I work with an amazing group of employees! My team and peers make it a pleasure to come to work. They inspire me to lead, learn and enjoy each day.
Are there particular aspects of Frontier as a company that stand out to you? I am constantly amazed at the level of commitment and dedication of our employees. I am honored to work with a great group of aviation professionals.
Advice to others? As corny as it sounds…do what makes you happy and make sure what you do adds value to others. Practice both internal and external Customer Service. This will allow both personal and professional growth and satisfaction.
Favorite Frontier destination? Bozeman, Montana
Favorite plane tail? Blanco the Polar Bear
Captain, Flight Operations, ORD
How many years have you worked with Frontier? 6 Years
Can you share a little about your career path? When I was young, my mom won a small airplane ride in a silent auction at our local fair. After the ride, I would not stop talking about it. My mom did some research and found I could take lessons at the local airport. As soon as I could, I took a job at the local supermarket and every paycheck went directly to my flight training. I finished my Private Pilots Certificate in high school and continued at a technical college to earn the rest of my pilot certificates and ratings. The technical college then employed me as a flight instructor while I finished my bachelor’s degree in an accelerated night program. As soon as I met the required minimum flight hours, I was hired by American Eagle (Envoy Air). In 2015, I was able to attain my career goals by joining the Frontier Airlines Team.
What motivates or inspires you to serve in your role? The challenges of each flight, the beautiful views from my office, and the great people at Frontier.
Are there particular aspects of Frontier as a company that stand out to you? Frontier has a great group of employees. I always enjoy the people I work with and fly with.
Favorite Frontier destination? Chicago because it’s always nice to return home after a trip, but I do enjoy Tampa’s weather and boardwalk.
Favorite plane tail? Joe Bob the Badger
First Officer, Flight Operations, LAS
How many years have you worked with Frontier? 2 Years, 1 Month
Who or what inspired you to pursue a career in aviation? What got me into aviation was a bit of a fluke. I read a book called the Aladdin Factor. I have to say that it was one of those books that changed my life. The book talked about the power of asking. But the thing that struck me was an exercise. In the book it said to write down 101 things you want out of your life. I proceeded to do that exercise with great skepticism. The reason I had skepticism was that the author said that the craziest thing that you put down will come true first. By the time I got to 101, I had no idea what to write. I saw a plane flying over and I put ‘learn to fly’. The book also said that you must read your 101 things each day. What I did not know was that in the area I was living there was a small airport. One day as I was reading my 101 things, I heard the engine of a small plane. Something told me to get in my car and follow the little plane. I did. As it turned out, there was a general aviation airport in my area and that small airport had a flight school. I walked into that flight school and began my journey into aviation.
What motivates or inspires you to serve in your role? I think one of the things that inspires me most is the reaction from people. When people see me, I can just tell by the look on their faces they are surprised. Being that I am only five feet tall makes it so that many people think, well, if she can do it I can do it too. I like that.
Are there particular aspects of Frontier as a company that stand out to you? What stands out to me is that Frontier feels like a family. To me, the greatest asset of Frontier is its people.
Advice to others? The only limitations that you have are the ones that you recognize.
Favorite Frontier destination? Cancún
Favorite plane tail? Fran the Sea Lion
Flight Attendant, Inflight Experience, DEN
How many years have you worked with Frontier? 26 Years
Can you share a little about your career path? My mom was a flight attendant at Continental Airlines in Denver in the 80s when I was growing up. Continental left Denver and my mom opted for an early out rather than relocating. I had just finished college at the University of Washington and had plans to find a job in journalism. As I was preparing to move home after graduation, my mom shared with me that this new airline, Frontier, was hiring. The day after I arrived in Colorado, she and I both interviewed for a flight attendant position. The interview process was much longer back then so I began working another job. My mom and I both got hired together. She was just a few numbers ahead of me. We got to work and fly together and we were Frontier’s first mother-daughter team.
What motivates or inspires you to serve in your role? There are a million stories over the years that I could share. My co-workers inspire me and I have enjoyed working in many roles during my career. I was a trainer for 10 years and conducted IOEs for 19 years. I have had the privilege of meeting so many people. To watch other fight attendants grow in this profession has been special.
Are there particular aspects of Frontier as a company that stand out to you? I look back at Frontier and where we started. We had three aircraft. Frontier continues to persevere, and it feels really good to see our airline listed with the majors. I am also passionate about safety and emergency procedures having served on Frontier’s safety committee. I am now the safety chair for the AFA. I conducted IOEs because I wanted to ensure our flight attendants were prepared.
Favorite Frontier destination? Cancún
Favorite plane tail? Crockett the Raccoon
M’Shell Bandemer Stohr
Captain, Flight Operations, MCO
How many years have you worked with Frontier? 17 1/2 Years
Can you share a little bit about your career path? I was inspired to become a pilot after traveling to Europe as a child to visit my grandparents and relatives. During each flight, I spent time with the pilots and could hang out in the cockpit, back in the 1970s when this was allowed. I aspired to become an airline pilot, but I was told this was impossible because there were no female airline pilots at the time.
Who or what inspired you to pursue a career in aviation? In 1973, Emily Howell Warner became the first woman to be hired at an airline and inspired me to pursue my goal of becoming an airline pilot. Later in my career, I was honored to be able to meet her on the day I upgraded to Captain. I started flight training in 1986 at Embry-Riddle in Daytona Beach, FL. My career started flight instructing at Elgin AFB in small planes. After five years, I moved on to flying an SF-340 for a regional airline, NW Airlink. Then, I flew 727s for the former Trump Shuttle which merged into US Airways and transitioned to Airbus in 2000. After 9/11 I was furloughed from US Airways and joined the Frontier family, shortly thereafter.
Are there particular aspects of Frontier as a company that stand out for you? I decided to stay at Frontier because I loved the people I work with; my co-workers are the best in the industry. I also believe in our business model especially going forward in uncertain economic times.
Advice to others? Never stop pursuing your dreams even when you’re told they are impossible!
Favorite Frontier destination? Anywhere tropical and warm
Favorite tail? Skye the Bluebird is my favorite because my youngest son is named Skye and his favorite color is blue.
Captain, Flight Operations, DEN
How many years have you been with Frontier? 19 Years, 9 Months
Can you share a little bit about your career path? My career started at the age of 23. I was working in a ski shop in Oregon and wanted something more. I took a chance and left my hometown to pursue a childhood dream of an aviation career. I started at Spartan School of Aeronautics in Tulsa, Oklahoma where my adventure in flight began.
Who or what inspired you to pursue a career in aviation? My parents. They never set limitations and always supported my dreams and goals. They had a positive attitude of “Go for it!” and said “If you don’t like it, you can always come home. If you don’t take a chance and try something, you will never know.”
What motivates or inspires you to serve in your role? Frontier Airlines has inspired me from the first day of being hired. In 1973, the original Frontier Airlines hired the first female airline pilot. The late Emily Howell Warner was the first woman to be hired at a U.S. airline. This opened doors to women in aviation. I am constantly motivated and empowered by the great network of Frontier employees that are involved in getting our aircraft safely from point A to B. It brings a smile to my face!
Are there particular aspects of Frontier as a company that stand out to you? Since 1994, Frontier Airlines has been uniquely connected to Denver as the principal airline anchored to the Denver International Airport. While we are a growing company, our customer service sets the benchmark for us not only to hold our own but grow as an Ultra LowCost Carrier. I specifically selected Frontier over 19 years ago because of its rock-solid reputation and unparalleled opportunities with a new fleet of Airbus aircraft. A growing airline with quality people makes Frontier a wonderful company to work for.
Advice to others? FLY! It is the safest and quickest form of transportation. The convenience of getting away with a friend or seeing family makes it affordable and flexible.
Favorite Frontier destination? Cancún
Favorite tail? Chinook, el lobo gris
At Frontier we are proud of our diversity as a company and the inclusive culture we strive to create! Thank you to these team members for the contributions they have made to ensure our success!
*Some of these photos were taken pre-COVID.