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IATA Diversity & Inclusion Awards, sponsored by Qatar Airways, recognize individuals, organizations, and initiatives that have made significant contributions to promoting and advancing diversity and inclusion within the aviation industry.

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These awards celebrate the efforts of those who have worked to create a more inclusive culture, foster a sense of belonging, and promote equity and fairness in the aviation industry.

By honoring these achievements, IATA Diversity & Inclusion Awards aim to inspire others to follow suit and continue to work towards a more diverse and inclusive aviation industry for all.

Nominations are now closed! Winners will be announced at the 2024 IATA's Annual General Meeting. Find out below about the different categories.

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Diversity & Inclusion Awards recognize three categories of leadership in diversity and inclusion:

  • Inspirational Role Model: will be presented to a woman who holds a senior position within the industry who has had a significant impact on the aviation agenda through her strong contribution to business delivery and her ongoing support of the diversity & inclusion agenda. Open to all female participants in the aviation industry (IATA members and non-members alike).
  • High Flyer: designed to recognize one of aviation’s female professionals (i.e. under the age of 40) who has developed thought leadership through concrete action in favor of diversity & inclusion, making a positive impact on the industry. Open to all female professionals in the aviation industry (IATA members and non-members alike).
  • Diversity & Inclusion Team: designed to recognize an airline that has seen measurable change in diversity and inclusion as a result of the work it has been doing. Open to all IATA member airlines.


Each award category comes with US$25,000 in prize money, generously funded by Qatar Airways. Winners will be announced during IATA’s Annual General Meeting in June 2024.


The 2024 nominations will be evaluated by an independent panel formed by the winners of the 2023 Awards:

  • Poppy Khoza, Director of Civil Aviation, South African Civil Aviation Authority (SAACA)
  • Camila Turrieta, Chair of the President’s Committee for Diversity & Inclusion, Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA), and First Officer, JetBlue Airways
  • Donna Codrington, Senior Manager & Legal Counsel, Virgin Atlantic Airways

The judging panel will be chaired by Karen Walker, Editor-in-Chief of Air Transport World.

> Find out more about the previous Awards winners

2023 Winners

Inspirational Role Model Award – Poppy Khoza

Director of Civil Aviation, South African Civil Aviation Authority (SAACA)

At SACAA, Khoza’s work focuses on providing equal opportunities for women. She has led the transformation of the organization which now boasts women in 50% of executive roles. In her work, Khoza spares no effort in mentoring and coaching other women to challenge the status quo and create a more gender balanced aviation industry.

High Flyer Award – Camila Turrieta

Chair of the President’s Committee for Diversity & Inclusion, Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA), and First Officer, JetBlue Airways

At ALPA, Turrieta is the voice for diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives for the Association’s 63,000 pilots at 40 airlines. She leads ALPA’s efforts to use gender inclusive terms, expand the Association’s anti-harassment and anti-discrimination policy to promote an environment of inclusiveness in the piloting profession. This led to the FAA requesting her assistance in creating an inclusive culture through positive regulatory changes within the aviation sector.

Diversity & Inclusion Team Virgin Atlantic Airways

Virgin Atlantic Airways is a true pioneer in the area of diversity, equity and inclusion. To support the refresh of the airline’s “Be Yourself” strategy, the company introduced bold changes which included:

  • Revising policies to allow visible tattoos while in uniform,
  • Launching the reasonable workplace adjustment policy to ensure its employees with disabilities get the support they need,
  • Transforming recruitment to remove barriers by focusing on inclusion and accessibility.


> Learn more about the 2023 winners of the IATA Diversity & Inclusion Awards

2022 Winners

Inspirational Role Model Award – Güliz Öztürk

CEO at Pegasus

As the first female CEO in the field of air transportation in the history of Turkish civil aviation, Öztürk serves as a strong inspiration for women in Türkiye and around the aviation world. She joined Pegasus in 2005. As Chief Commercial Officer, she pioneered numerous diversity and inclusion initiatives. Öztürk is also the co-chair of the airline’s Women in Sales Network, a company-wide initiative to improve gender balance in commercial departments.

High Flyer Award – Kanchana Gamage

Founder and Director of the Aviatrix Project

As a diversity champion from an ethnic minority background, UK-based Gamage continues to be a role model for the next generation of women. Having worked on bridging the STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) gap, particularly in relation to the under representation of women in the aviation industry, Gamage launched The Aviatrix Project in 2015.

Diversity & Inclusion Team – airBaltic

AirBaltic’s core values “We deliver. We care. We grow” reflect the airline’s approach to operating in a globalized industry, such as aviation. Diversity and inclusion have become a key differentiator for the carrier, which has introduced a strict zero discrimination policy and where 45% of the airline’s top management team comprises women, a figure that is significantly higher than the industry’s average. AirBaltic is recognized for promoting gender equality across the company.


> Learn more about the 2022 winners of the IATA Diversity & Inclusion Awards

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