The American Legacy

Every American pilot has been where you are right now. That moment where your journey skyward first starts. When you become a cadet, you join your unique story to our unique story. Explore the American legacy.   

You Belong with the Pioneers


The first American flight

On April 15, 1926, Charles Lindbergh flew the first American Airlines flight – carrying U.S. mail from St. Louis, Missouri, to Chicago, Illinois. 


The first nonstop transcontinental service across the U.S

American started nonstop transcontinental service across the U.S. with the Douglas DC-7.


The first African-American pilot flying a commercial airline

In 1964, American hired Dave Harris, the first African-American pilot for a commercial airline.


The first female pilot flying a commercial airline

In 1973, American Airlines hired Bonnie Tiburzi, the first female pilot for a commercial airline.


First-of-its-Kind Flight Training Program

In 2018, American Airlines launched the American Airlines Cadet Academy. This program has allowed hundreds of new aviators to follow their dreams by combining a curated career path, accessible financing options, carefully selected flight training partners, and the entire American Airlines team.


First American Airlines Cadets become American Airlines Pilots

In 2022, two graduates of the American Airlines Cadet Academy were selected to join American Airlines as First Officers. They have served as the first examples of American Cadets graduating out of the program and joining American Airlines!

You belong to a legacy of firsts when you join the Academy

Learn | Fly | Make History

How we lead

Our Purpose

At American, our purpose is to care for people on life’s journey.

Leadership attributes

Whether you are interacting with our customers at the airport or working on enhancing our IT systems, every team member is a leader. These five attributes help shape and sustain the environment for our fellow team members to thrive at American.

How we care

Learn more about how we care at American!

Awards & recognition