New F.D. Roosevelt Airport manager Darren Wilson. (Photo courtesy Darren Wilson)
ST. EUSTATIUS--With the appointment of Darren Wilson, St. Eustatius recently acquired a new manager for F.D. Roosevelt Airport.
Statia’s reconstructed airport is expected to be completed in the first quarter of 2021. The airport originally was expected to be completed at the end of 2020, but due to the COVID-19 pandemic hindering the arrival of essential workers the completion date for the project had to be pushed back.
Wilson took over operations at the airport from interim airport manager Richard van Dinter on Monday, October 19. Van Dinter has been overseeing airport operations since the departure of interim airport manager Ric Isarin in July.
Wilson was born in St. Maarten and his ancestors hail from Saba. He started his career in aviation in 2005 at the Air Traffic Services Department at Princess Juliana International Airport (PJIA) in St. Maarten as a flight information officer and then moved up to air traffic control assistant before leaving for college.
He attended Florida Institute of Technology where he earned a Bachelor’s degree in Aviation Management and on completion of his degree he returned to St. Maarten where he worked as a quality assurance officer and airport operations officer at PJIA.
Wilson assisted in the completion of the Safety Management Manual (SMS) for PJIA and was one of the lecturers for the weekly New Employee Orientation Programme started by the Quality Assurance Department with the objective to provide all new hires with information needed to perform their duties at the highest possible safety level.
Wilson also earned certificates from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (ERAU), the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), the United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and Airport Councils International (ACI) in the area of SMS development and implementation, airport certification inspections and airport operations.
Wilson said he had represented PJIA internationally during conferences and trainings in countries such as Antigua and Barbuda, Mexico and Suriname.
Airports are a major component of a country’s economic development and as Wilson starts his new career as airport manager in Statia he says he hopes to use his knowledge, experience and network to help guide F.D. Roosevelt Airport “through a successful holistic transition into the new terminal so that its growth is sustainable and its potential can be realised for the benefit of the island of Statia.”
Wilson was present at the retirement ceremony for Winair Captain Roger Hodge at Statia’s airport on Friday, October 23.