This month's Aviator Spotlight shines its light on Wendi Dameron; an Aeronautical Analyst for Garmin. Wendi started as a flight attendant then found her way into flight operations and eventually an aeronautical analyst. Now, she's working on the her instrument rating, flying the same approaches she worked on. Wendi is a prime example of why Scanners™ shines its spotlight on every individual in the aviation community.
Read Wendi's full story below:
Wendi Dameron's Story
Hi! My name is Wendi and I've been in aviation my entire career. Just a little over a year after high
school, I started my journey as a flight attendant. I had only been on a plane once prior and had no idea
what to expect. I guess you could say shortly thereafter I got bit by "the bug" and couldn't imagine working in another industry.
I flew for five glorious years and decided I was ready to be grounded. Still wanting to remain in the
industry I had fallen in love with, I got hired on by a Part 135 airline in their flight operations
department. I loved learning this side of the operations - filing flight plans, scheduling, aircraft routing; it felt like I was getting paid to go to school and not work based off all the things I was learning! This is where my passion really started to soar and got me thinking about my long-term future.
After 3 years working in flight operations, I found an opportunity with a flight simulation company.
Although still in aviation, it gave me a new perspective in seeing how everything and everyone is intertwined. My knowledge base grew as I developed relationships with aircraft and avionics vendors to keep the simulators constantly on motion. I was convinced that this was where I belonged and that it would be the place that I would one day retire from - and then this thing called COVID-19, hit.
I got laid off, along with hundreds of my colleagues and friends, as the aviation industry (and entire world) came to a standstill. I wondered if I should start looking into a different career path but that thought quickly diminished. I love this exciting, sometimes uncertain industry - no way I'm stopping now! I decided while I was unemployed, I had plenty of time to start preparing for the next chapter. I decided to finish my bachelor's degree, took (and passed) the written test for my instrument rating, and started networking in hopes to find an opportunity.
That day came when I got hired on with Garmin as an Aeronautical Analyst! I have been with them for a
little over a year now and love what I do. I am currently working on finishing my instrument rating and it's pretty cool that the same approaches I'm learning to fly are the ones that I code at work! I've
learned the importance of accurate aeronautical data and how vital it is to aviation safety.
" I am currently working on finishing my instrument rating and it's pretty cool that the same approaches I'm learning to fly are the ones that I code at work! "
In addition to completing my instrument rating, I hope to continue to grow at Garmin and network with other aviation professionals and enthusiasts!
- Wendi Dameron
Thank you, Wendi, for sharing your aviation story. If you have a story you would like to share with the world send it to us at AviatorSpotlight@scannersifr.com. We look forward to hearing from you and sharing your story!
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