Watching seaplanes take off and land at New York City’s East River followed by a flight with a friend in a Cessna 172 redirected Sarah Tamar Kohan’s career path. Kohan earned her private pilot certificate and then left her career in advertising to work as a dockhand for New York City-based seaplane company Tailwind while she earned advanced certificates and ratings. Now, she is second in command for a Tailwind Cessna Grand Caravan and won the Women in Aviation International/Martha King Scholarship for Female Flight Instructors to become a CFI and share her love of float flying with others.
Although based in New York City, Kohan will be flying with Tailwind out of Florida’s Fort Lauderdale Executive Airport this winter and plans to work on her flight instructor certificate while in the Sunshine State.
The WAI/Martha King Scholarship for Female Flight Instructors provides free, unlimited access to King Schools courses and includes a $5,000 stipend. The scholarship value totals $18,000.
Many pilots find switching to flying from the left seat to the right seat a challenge when training for the flight instructor certificate, but Kohan already has experience flying from the right seat as second in command on the Caravan. Kohan believes her biggest challenge to earning the certificate “will be learning to speak through all maneuvers and explain what I am doing out loud in order to teach while doing.” On the other hand, Kohan told AOPA via email, “I think it will be a thrilling challenge to get a student to tackle a brand new topic and begin to understand it.”
Even once she starts flying jets, float flying will always be her favorite: “I think seaplane flying is the most magical, most fun, most challenging, and most exciting thing you can do in aviation,” Kohan said, “and I want to share my love for this kind of flying with the world.”