Irene Irvine Ryan was the first woman to fly solo in the Territory of Alaska! On June 23, 1932 Irene soloed at Merrill Field in Anchorage. After this she became the first woman geologist to graduate from the New Mexico School of Mines. During World War II she worked for the Civil Aeronautics Authority designing and constructing airfields for the Air Force. She helped to design Anchorage International Airport among others. During the 1950s she enjoyed a career in politics, serving in the Alaska Territorial House of Representatives in 1955 and 1957. Once Alaska became a state in 1959, Irene served in the Alaska State Senate.