Lieutenant Colonel Luke Weathers Jr. was the first African American air traffic controller for the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) based at the Memphis International Airport (MEM). On June 25, 1945 Lt. Col. Weathers also became the first African American to receive the key to the City of Memphis declaring the day "Luke Weathers, Jr. Day."

To honor his contributions to aviation, the all-new Lt. Col. Luke Weathers Jr. Flight Academy (LWFA) has been established at the Olive Branch Airport, just a short drive from his Memphis home. The new Flight Academy will offer FAR 141 and 61 Flight Training, JET Transition Training, a Maintenance and Air Traffic Control Academy, UAV Pilot Training, Military Rotor Fixed Wing Transition, Air Force Candidate Flight Training, Mentoring and more.

Through the establishment of the Lt. Col. Luke Weathers Jr. Flight Academy, OBAP is excited to provide a new facility that offers life-changing training for students from Memphis area schools and beyond who possess a desire to fly.  

The Luke Weathers Flight Academy aims to grow and diversify the future pilot pipeline. We have aggressive plans to increase the diversity of the airline industry by 50 pilots per year within the next 5 years.

Use the buttons below to learn more about the all-new LWFA and get involved!

OBAP is grateful for the support of a growing and committed group of partners to achieve the long-term vision for the LWFA.








Lt. Col. Luke Weathers Jr. image courtesy of Memphis and Shelby County Room, Memphis Public Library & Information Center