Born and raised in Montréal Québec, Dr. Janet Lapp was inspired to fly when, as a child at a local airstrip in Canada, she would sit for hours on the grass watching small airplanes magically lift into the sky. Education and family followed, and it wasn’t until her late 30's and a move to California for a university faculty position in Neuropsychology that she was able to earn her pilot’s license.
An IFR rating, commercial license, an instructor’s certificate (CFI) and three Bonanzas (A36, B36TC and V35B) followed. She applied her background in neuropsychology to human factors in flight, and developed an expertise in cognitive factors and unrecognized mild cognitive impairment (MCI). She is the co-author (with Lorne Sheren, MD) of Keep Young and Fly Forever, and has developed and presented programs for several organizations including AOPA, FAA Wings, EAA, ABS and other aircraft owner groups on cognitive and health factors that keep pilots of any age fit to fly.
She feels fortunate to have been able to use her aircraft to explore the world. In her Bonanzas, she has flown throughout North, Central and South America, and in rented C182’s has flown solo over much of southern Africa. She’s been often questioned, stopped, and confined and her airplane confiscated just because she was a female flying alone (FFA).
For the past 20 years she has flown each month with the Flying Doctors of Mercy to deliver care to the under-served of central México. She is the founder of Liga Clean Water teaching prevention and sanitation and helping to eliminate water-borne disease in Sinaloa, México. She welcomes other female aviators to join her on the weekend missions and to keep encouraging other young women to choose any field associated with aviation. The only direction possible is up.
Dr. Lapp is our guest speaker at the WAISD Spring Gala on May 17, 2019.