I first learned about Wasilla, Alaska, a city of about 10,000, while researching an article about mentors and student pilots. That article profiled a student pilot named Chad Speer from Wasilla, and it appeared in the May 2008 AOPA Flight Training. In September 2008, Wasilla became extremely well known for another of its inhabitants–then-Gov. Sarah Palin, who was the Republican vice presidential nominee in the presidential election. Palin had been Wasilla’s mayor before she was elected governor. While all that was going on, Chad Speer and his dad, Rob, were plugging away at Chad’s training, flying Rob’s Super Cub in some of the most beautiful country imaginable, if the photos sent by his mom, Pamela, are any indication. (That’s Chad flying up the Knik Glacier.) On August 4, 17-year-old Chad passed his private pilot checkride. Congratulations to Chad!