Aviation for Women

SEP-OCT 2018

Aviation for Women is the flagship member publication of Women in Aviation International. Articles feature women who have made aviation history, professional development ideas, and current-topic articles.

Issue link: https://afwdigital.epubxp.com/i/1014503

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26 AviationforWomen S E P T E M B E R / O C T O B E R 2 0 1 8 could be. We did all kinds of interest- ing things to get the feel the custom- er was looking for. As a designer, those are the fun moments. It's a great feel- ing to explore an avenue that some- one wants and make it a reality." Tia Cur tis, principa l designer, agrees and notes the reward of meeting with customers and ex- ploring what they are looking for. "With the level of customization we have, the customer has great freedom," Tia says. She likens de- signing the interior of the aircraft to set design. "The aircraft cab- in is your set. It is a blank canvas that can be transformed into whatever the customer desires based on how they work, live, and entertain. It can also be a challenge to balance what the customer needs in terms of customization with aviation guidelines and safe- ty criteria, as well as meet FA A regulations." Tia says she enjoys finding a solution that fits what the customer is looking for while adhering to the requirements of aviation. "I love going above and beyond for my customers every day," she says. She is proud of building relationships with customers and working with them to achieve their desired aesthetic. Courtney shares the same sentiment. "We want to deliver the highest standard of excellence to our customers," she says. "We strive for perfection every day, which does present its own challeng- es, ranging from suppliers to FAA regulations to making sure the customer is satisfied." Both women are definitely up to the challenge. Tia, who started her design career as an intern during college at Dassault Falcon's Completion Center in Little Rock, Arkansas, joined Gulfstream's design group five years ago. Prior to that, she spent seven years with Hawker Beechcraft. Tia didn't start out thinking about pursuing a career in design. In fact, she entered the University of Central Arkansas as a pre-med student, majoring in biology—though she says she was always a creative person and de- sign was a passion of hers. She decided to make the move from pre-med to interior design, initially wanting to pursue set design. One of her professors also worked at Raytheon Aircraft Company as an interior design engi- neer. The professor, who also came from a medical background as a practicing pharmacist, became a mentor to Tia and introduced her to the aviation industry. "I fell in love with the program and as I progressed, I knew this was where I was supposed to be." Tia says she was attracted to Gulfstream because of the reputa- tion the business jet manufacturer has, both within the industry and with its customers. "Gulfstream is a great place to work," she says. It leads the way with innovation and excels in customer satis- faction. It's a great place to grow in my craft." Both women say there is no such thing as a typical day. Activi- ties range from traveling around the globe to meet with custom- ers to reviewing a carpet that has just come in from the suppli- er. A relatively small percentage of overall time is spent meeting Courtney admits having a spouse with a nontraveling job makes things easier, but like most working adults toda ou have to enjo he balance. "It is a lot easier whe ou love wha ou do." The Gulfstream interior design team works with vendors and the visualization team to ensure customers are satisfied with the completion and delivery of their custom business aircraft cabin.

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