Meet The Staff

Wes Watson - President/GMWes Watson – President/GM

Wes began his flying career in an Aeronca Champ. Wanting to fly his whole life, that dream became true as he now manages Aerowood. While most of his experience is in the IFR enroute environment flying Part 91, he has a true love for tailwheel instructing bringing pilots back to the simple basics… and he is secretly an electronic nerd.

  • Commercial, ASEL, AMEL, CFI
  • 1050+ hours

Cell: 704.438.7438 Email: wes@aerowoodaviation.com 

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Jim Efird - Chief Flight Instructor Aerowood AviationJim Efird- Chief Flight Instructor

Jim earned his Flight Instructor rating in 1962, and delights in sharing the fundamentals of airmanship with people new to the sky. His flying includes 16 years in Alaska, another decade in the shadow of O’Hare’s TCA, and PIC  in more than 70 different models of airplanes. He is one of the few tailwheel instructors in the Charlotte area.

While in Alaska Efird was Chief Pilot of a Part 135 operation and 141 school, and volunteered with the Alaska Air Safety Foundation and Civil Air Patrol. He is currently Union County’s FAA Safety Team Representative.

A professional writer before coming to the Carolinas, Efird has written extensively in the fields of aviation and safety, including pilot manuals for many high-end business jets.

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  • Commercial ASEL, AMEL, ASES, Glider, Instrument
  • CFII, CFIG, MEI.
  • Total time 5000+

Cell: 704.989.6223 Email: jim@aerowoodaviation.com

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Peter Malec - Flight Instructor Aerowood Aviation

Peter Malec – Flight Instructor

Commercial, ASEL, AMEL, CFI, CFII, MEI

Peter has been a Charlotte Resident for near 16+ years. He graduated from UNC Charlotte in 2006. Began Policing in Kannapolis in 2007. He then began Training at ATP flight school out of Concord (JQF) in Nov of 2011 and completed it Jan of 2013. His hobbies include attending sporting games, boating, fishing (Freshwater and Saltwater) and of course flying!

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Email: peter@aerowoodaviation.com

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STAFF ADVISORS:

Walt Hogan - Aerowood AviationWalton Hogan

Commander Hogan is a retired naval aviator, a carrier pilot new to general aviation whose extensive background in the military, government, and private business supporting aviation is highly valued by the rest of our team. Walt brings more than 40 years leadership experience to the table. He is a graduate of the US Naval Academy and was on faculty at West Point.

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  • 4500 hours flight time
  • US Navy Carrier Pilot (Recips and Jets), 1000 hours instructional pilot, LSO, NATOPS Evaluator -  MS Computer Science, MBA – Darden (UVA) and Long Island University (Obtained when they meant something)
  • Graduate of Defense Systems Acquisition  Program Management
  • Program Manager for $1.2B Naval Aircraft upgrade, new designation Aircraft
  • 40 years management and engineering experience with Aviation and supporting FAA
  • Owner of two successful small businesses.

Cell:  571.224.3943 Email: walt@aerowoodaviation.com

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Oscar- Aerowood Aviation StaffOscar Szigeti Jr

Cpt Szigeti is a second-generation retired airline pilot with more than 16,000 hours in aircraft that include the Learjet, DC-8, Boeing 727, Airbus 310/300. His lifetime in an aviation family and decades of flying “Big Iron” provides the team with welcome and needed insights and perspectives.

Currently out of state training in a new bizjet, which he in turn will train the new owner, we look forward to having him back.

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  • ATP MEL, Comm SEL, instrument
  • CFI, CFII, MEI, AGI, IGI
  • Type Ratings : Learjet, DC-8, B-727, Airbus 310/300
  • Total Hours : 16000 +

Cell: 704.651.8822 Email: musclecar6@aol.com

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