In addition to flying and maintaining one airplane I inherited from my father, and building another he started, I enjoy gardening, capturing family stories, and historic restoration. We are in the process of restoring several older homes. In this endeavor, I have discovered a knack for re-purposing all kinds of found objects and material. Some is put to use in our houses, some I sell.
I began working at my father’s auto salvage business in high school. I cleaned, took inventory, mowed and kept books after school. Most of my childhood, I lived in the house my father grew up in; across from the high school from which I graduated with virtually the same classmates I entered grammar school with. I flew with my dad in the same airplane I fly today. After a short stint in college I ended up in Denver, CO where I entered civil service as a personnel clerk in 1972.
I decided to take the entrance exam and entered a pass/fail training program for air traffic control. In completing the 13 succeeding pass/fail phases of training, I spent the next 20 years happily “telling pilots where to go”! While there, I was granted a nine month leave of absence in 1983 to attend the University of Strasbourg in France to study French while my husband worked on a doctorate.
I moved into a staff position at the Wichita Air Traffic Control Facility in 1988. In 1992 I received my private pilot’s license while completing the restoration of my father’s airplane. He was my first passenger in that plane.
In 1994 I traveled to Madagascar as a member of a Civil Aviation Assessment Team sponsored by the government of Madagascar. In 1995 I became the Air Traffic Representative for Europe, Africa and the Middle East, Brussels Belgium. I worked with International Civil Aviation Organization member nations, EUROCONTROL, NATO and the US Military on matters requiring air traffic technical assistance.
Following, I served on the FAA air traffic accident and incident investigation staff, for 5 years. In 2005 moved to the air traffic safety evaluations staff, Washington, D.C. I retired in January 2010 after 38 years of civil service.
My Second Life
I named myself a Historical Entrepreneur. Under that title, I Give Lost Stories A Voice and Found Materials Fresh Form and Purpose. I share about these two endeavors and the pillars on which they are built each week in THE STONEBRIDGE BLOG.
We are in the midst of restoring our 1888 Richardsonian Victorian home, Maison Steinbuchel, located in Historic Midtown, Wichita, KS. This gives me a lot of subject matter for my “found item re-purposing” outlet.
In 2015 I self-published my first book, a compilation of my father’s writings, who passed on in 2000. My BLOG includes snippets of stories from my own family heritage. It also includes a lot of information on the family for whom our Historic Home is named.
In my free time, I fly, enjoy family and friends both near and far, gardening and a regular date night with the love of my life. We are active members of Faith Community Church, Wichita. I am currently a member of the local Mission Aviation Advocate Wing.
The Reverend Doctor Charles David Cullen and I have been married for forty years. We do not have children. However, we enjoy our nieces, nephews and the many students my husband instructs in varied aspects of classical education. We also have a brood of cats that you may hear about from time to time.