Doris Lockness began flying in the 1930s. Today she holds all of her ratings, from signal-engine land/sea to free balloon, and those in between. She started World War II working for Douglas Aircraft as a Liaison Engineer on the C-4, but then joined Jackie Cochran’s WASP and went off to Sweetwater, Texas, to train. Doris continued to fly after World War II and earned her helicopter rating in the 1960s, and her commercial gyroplane rating in 1998 (she was only the second woman to hold the rating in a constant speed prop gyroplane).
For many years you could pick Doris out of the crowd at air shows by her Vultee-Stinson Swamp Angel, which she flew around the country. Her contributions to the promotion and public acceptance of women as pilots in general aviation have been honored by the Ninety-Nines in its "Forest of Friendship" and by the OX-5 Pioneers, which has recognized her with both its Legion of Merit Award, Pioneer Women’s Award and Pioneer Hall of Fame. She has also been honored with the Whirly Girls Livingston Award in 1995, and a certificate of honor from the National Aeronautic Association (NAA), as well as the organization’s Elder Statesman of Aviation Award (1991 and 1995). In 1997 Doris was honored again by the NAA, receiving its Katherine Wright Memorial Award. Doris’ aeronautical achievements have inspired many to set higher goals and stretch to reach them, encouraging countless women over more than seven decades to put on their wings and fly.