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updated: 6/6/2011 11:58 AM

Wheeling jet pilot Amanda Sorenson caters to rich

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  • Pilot Amanda Sorenson of Priester Aviation gets ready for takeoff by checking all the controls in her Citation Sovereign aircraft with her fellow pilot Fred Bartlett of Burlington, WI., before she leaves Chicago Executive Airport.

       Pilot Amanda Sorenson of Priester Aviation gets ready for takeoff by checking all the controls in her Citation Sovereign aircraft with her fellow pilot Fred Bartlett of Burlington, WI., before she leaves Chicago Executive Airport.
    Mark Welsh | Staff Photographer

  • Sorenson leaves her Citation Sovereign aircraft heading back to the hanger to check the weather and gives the thumbs-up before she leaves Chicago Executive Airport.

       Sorenson leaves her Citation Sovereign aircraft heading back to the hanger to check the weather and gives the thumbs-up before she leaves Chicago Executive Airport.
    Mark Welsh | Staff Photographer

  • Wheeling's Pilot Amanda Sorenson of Priester Aviation does a walk around checking different compartments on her Citation Sovereign aircraft before she pick up clients from Chicago Executive Airport.

       Wheeling's Pilot Amanda Sorenson of Priester Aviation does a walk around checking different compartments on her Citation Sovereign aircraft before she pick up clients from Chicago Executive Airport.
    Mark Welsh | Staff Photographer

  • Sorenson of Priester Aviation does a walk around on her Citation Sovereign aircraft before she pick up clients from Chicago Executive Airport.

       Sorenson of Priester Aviation does a walk around on her Citation Sovereign aircraft before she pick up clients from Chicago Executive Airport.
    Mark Welsh | Staff Photographer

  • Wheeling's Pilot Amanda Sorenson of Priester Aviation gets ready for takeoff by checking all the controls in her Citation Sovereign aircraft with her fellow pilot Fred Bartlett of Burlington, Wisconsin before she leaves Chicago Executive Airport.

       Wheeling's Pilot Amanda Sorenson of Priester Aviation gets ready for takeoff by checking all the controls in her Citation Sovereign aircraft with her fellow pilot Fred Bartlett of Burlington, Wisconsin before she leaves Chicago Executive Airport.
    Mark Welsh | Staff Photographer

  • Sorenson checks to make sure all drinks and luxury items for the clients are stocked in her Citation Sovereign aircraft before she flies off to pick up her clients from Chicago Executive Airport.

       Sorenson checks to make sure all drinks and luxury items for the clients are stocked in her Citation Sovereign aircraft before she flies off to pick up her clients from Chicago Executive Airport.
    Mark Welsh | Staff Photographer

 
 

Amanda Sorenson, 32, of Wheeling has had her head in the clouds since she was 9.

Today she is the only female pilot at Priester Aviation located at Chicago Executive Airport in Wheeling. She received her pilot's license at age 19.

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The nine-passenger Citation Sovereign she pilots costs clients $3,675 per hour, travels at 530 mph and cruises at 45,000 feet. Flying as many as 60 hours in a month, Sorenson caters to athletes, musicians and movie stars, all of whom she pampers to the extreme as their pilot, baggage handler and flight attendant. She once flew a woman and her 15 dogs as a charter.

Though she caters to the rich and famous, no pictures or autographs are allowed, providing solitude for her passengers.

Sorenson says the coolest part of the job is "the uncertainty of where I am going to be from one minute to the next. One day I can be in Las Vegas the next, Alaska."

From her "ultimate office window," she has seen the curvature of the earth, falling stars and even Air Force One in flight.

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