Women in AviAtion is internAtionAl:
Amy Laboda Interviews
Marta Lestau Saenz
Aviation Safety and Security Agency, Spain
Marta Lestau Saenz trained as an aeronautical
engineer at the Polytechnic University of Madrid,
and has been the Director of Civil Aviation Security
and User Protection since the establishment of the
Spanish Safety and Security State Agency in 2008.
She is responsible for support to the Secretary of
State for Transport in the coordination of the national aviation security program. She is also leading the strategy for the action plan for improving
air passenger rights and is in charge of air passenger rights enforcement. She deals with financial
supervision of airlines and air navigation services
providers in the Single European Sky framework.
We caught up with Saenz at the International
Transport Forum in Leipzig, Germany, where she
was a key speaker.
Are there a lot of women in the aviation ministry in Spain?
There are not, but my direct superior is Isabel Maestre Moreno, Director of the entire Aviation Safety Agency. She has a degree in Aeronautical Engineering from the Polytechnic University of Madrid and a Master
in Public Management from the Instituto de Empresa (IE) of Madrid. She
has been working in aviation since her years at university. Her career
was in commercial aviation, working at different national carriers, serving as Quality Manager and Head of Engineering at the Technical Directorate of Maintenance. She’s also worked in INECO in Airport Project
Management and at SENASA, where she led the Management of Flight
Standards and Training was Director of Air Traffic Controllers.
I am an aeronautical engineer, as she is. Our headquarters are in down-
town Madrid. Isabel and I are the only women on the board of directors
for Spanish Aviation.
When did you know you wanted a career in aviation?
I remember wanting to be an astronaut when I was young. I remem-
ber watching the astronauts on the moon while watching the TV. And af-