Celebrating Black History Month, Sharing our Colleagues’ Stories: Meet Wainwright McKenzie

Wainwright (Wain) McKenzie

Wainwright (Wain) McKenzie

In the eight years Wainwright McKenzie, Regional Manager, Heavy Maintenance Materials, has been at Atlas, he’s held several roles within the Company, setting him on a path of continuous learning.

From IAH (Houston) Supervisor to Stores Manager US region to his current role, Wayne has amassed an extensive breadth of knowledge and experience. And he wouldn’t have it any other way.

“I’m always looking for the next challenge,” said Wayne. “Setting goals – and achieving them – is important to me. I take every opportunity to learn something new, as I know that makes me better.”

Wayne credits his parents for this commitment to self-improvement.

“I came to the United States from Guyana when I was 15,” Wayne recalled. “My parents very much believed that America was the land of opportunity. They believed that moving to this country would give us the most opportunities to be the very best we could be. My parents were great models of how to elevate ourselves. I take great pride when my family says I’m following in my father’s footsteps.”

Wayne’s love of learning is what led him to pursue aviation as a career.

Wayne moving into his new desk at Erianger

Wayne moving into his new desk at Erianger

“Growing up, my family and I did a fair amount of traveling,” Wayne recalled. “I thought airplanes were fascinating, and I wanted to know everything about them – what they were made of and what made them fly.”

After graduating from high school, Wayne started learning the answers to his questions. He first took a job in ground ops a large passenger airline and then worked for a Swiss aviation company in ground ops pushing back planes.

From there he went to another passenger airline, which was where he was when he learned about Atlas. At the time he was working in JFK Stores, AOG Coordinator and then Materials Coordinator for checks. A former colleague recruited Wayne to be IAH Houston) Supervisor.

“At this point, I had been in aviation for quite some time, so I was thrilled by the opportunity to take my knowledge and apply it to something new in a different city,” said Wayne.

That was in January 2014. Since then, Wayne has consistently stretched and challenged himself to take on new roles and responsibilities at Atlas, establishing himself as a go-to resource for colleagues across the Company.

“He is a dedicated and valuable team member of the Stores and Logistics group,” said Aloisio Lopes, Director, Stores and Logistics.

Wayne exploring the pyramids in Mexico City

Wayne exploring the pyramids in Mexico City

Nancy Escobar, Manager of Stores, added, “Wayne is an active mentor to so many of our colleagues in Tech Ops. He is so passionate about aviation and always willing to help others.”

Wayne acknowledged that he draws inspiration to help others from those who came before him, particularly those who he has learned about over the years during Black History Month.

“I’m grateful to be in a position to share my knowledge and experience with others,” he said. “Black History Month is important to me because it both spotlights Black achievement and gives visibility to the people and organizations creating change. I have learned about my ancestors’ struggles, what they did to overcome challenges and how they helped others to change outcomes. It inspires me to do the same here at Atlas and in my community. As we celebrate Black History Month, I hope my colleagues recognize that, by helping others, we can be greater together.”