Joanna Mary Salter (born 27 August 1968 in Bournemouth) was Britain's first female fast jet pilot flying the Panavia Tornado ground attack aircraft with 617 Squadron, she later became an inspirational speaker.
Royal Air Force
Salter joined the Royal Air Force at the age of 18 to be an Engineering Officer but she went on to train as a pilot after the British government announced that women would be allowed to fly jet aircraft in 1992. As part of her engineering training she had studied at the Royal Military College of Science.
Salter was awarded her wings on 3 Apr 1992 and in August 1994 joined 617 Squadron at RAF Lossiemouth in August 1994 as a Flight Lieutenant, and was declared combat ready by the RAF on 21 February 1995. Salter was the first woman to be an operational Tornado pilot and she later flew from both Turkey and Saudi Arabia in protection of the No-fly zone over Iraq. Whilst flying ground attack Tornados, Salter started a MBA course with the Open University in 1996, being sponsored by the MoD, she completed the course in 1999.
Following maternity leave Salter left the RAF in 2000 to become head of technical services with an IT infrastructure company.
Salter gives motivational talks, and trains ATC and University Air Squadron cadets at the weekend. She married Robert Ashfield in January 1998 in Broughton, Hampshire. They have two daughters (born July 1998 and January 2002).