Black Pilots of America Overview

Black Pilots of America, Inc. (BPA) is a non-profit, 501(c)(3), charitable organization with a nationwide mission to introduce and educate underserved and underrepresented youths to the exciting world of aviation. BPA also promotes aviation excellence and safety among its membership. Our premier membership fly-in event is Operation Skyhook. The hallmark of our education effort is the BPA “Les Morris” Summer Flight Academy. 

Each Memorial Day weekend BPA members gather for fun, aviation comradery and serious flying competition at Operation Skyhook. The majority of competitors own their aircraft and take great pride in demonstrating their piloting skills. This tradition began in 1971 in Yazoo, MS moved to Tuskegee, AL and is now held in Pine Bluff, AR. This fly-in draws spectators from the surrounding area, and generous BPA members volunteer to give airplane rides to hundreds of enthusiastic kids. In addition, BPA members have flown countless thousands of students, free of charge, during other fly-in events nationwide. 

Les Morris started the Summer Flight Academy in 1971 at Moton Field, Tuskegee, AL. In 2001, BPA moved its Summer Flight Academy to Houston, TX. To date, over 900 youth have experienced the joy and challenges of the two-week Summer Flight Academy. Each cadet receives 10 hours of flight instruction as well as 40 hours of Private Pilot ground school. Our FAA certified instructors acquaint, motivate and encourage cadets to pursue aviation related careers. Many have become military and civilian aircrew members, air traffic controllers, aerospace engineers, and aircraft technicians.

BPA has affiliated flying clubs across the United States in pursuit of this mission. The Red-Tailed Hawks Flying Club represents BPA in Washington and Oregon.