Craig was known to walk around the airport with small gift cards to thank not only the pilots but anyone who went above and beyond in their position to assist a customer or fellow employee. He would seek the individual out when he would hear of their deed and shake their hand with a big smile. Craig would gift them a card as a thanks for their commitment to their job.
After his death, a challenge coin was created. It is called the Craig Huffman Award of Excellence and given to individuals who do go above and beyond. These coins are to be continually passed on to anyone who does more than what is asked of them.
Another story-Craig would show up at the airport crew room at 4:30AM on Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day when he was Chief Pilot. He did it for years. He felt that if his pilots had to fly these days, that early, and be away from their families, he would be there to send them off. He usually arranged to take along soups and snacks so that they had something to enjoy during their work day.
Craig always made sure everyone knew they were valued and appreciated. He was very aware of the considerable opportunities and wonderful friends he had at Alaska Airlines. He was always ready to assist the next pilot be successful in their career in any way that he could.
Craig was a very accomplished pilot who started his flying career in the Air Force. He was later hired by Alaska Airlines and flew for them for 28 years before cancer took his life. He also retired from the military with 21 years of service.
Craig always took on extra duties in both the AF and Alaska Airlines. He enjoyed working with the many different positions at each company. In the military, he was chosen to be an instructor on the T-38, a supersonic jet trainer. He was also a scheduler and a class commander. He had a calm and logical demeanor that allowed him to succeed.
At Alaska Airlines, he continued to challenge himself and take on several different duties. He was also a scheduler; making sure the pilots had good lines to bid their flights before computers did the job. He was an ALPA representative and was elected as Alaska Airline’s Vice Chairman for ALPA. He was chosen to be a Chief Pilot for the company. He served on many committees in this capacity and was well known for his diplomacy, calm demeanor, logic and honesty. Craig was an amazing mentor and an excellent leader who had great respect for the pilot group at the airline. He was committed to always have their best interest and was not afraid to do the hard things. He was known for his big stature, big smile and bear hugs.
In his personal life, family was of the utmost importance. He was very proud of them and taught his children many life skills. He was a cherished friend in many diverse groups. He was hard working, a loyal friend, and always ready to volunteer. He mentored many at-risk youth in the hopes of giving them a better life.
That being said, the Huffman Family would like to honor Craig with this fundraiser, which will support the Craig Huffman Memorial Scholarship, to help an inspired individual achieve their dream of becoming a pilot and show the same leadership qualities that Craig embodied.
We appreciate everyone who Craig has touched in his life that is helping make this scholarship a reality.