Professionally, I work as a corporate pilot, journalist, media executive, and Chief corporate officer. There are other interests, but let’s start with those. 

My driving passion is to help others become the best version of themselves, do their best work, serve others, & change the world for good.

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More about me

Welcome to the multi-dimensional, sleep-deprived, Washington-DC-based world of Michael Wildes: part pilot, part journalist, part C.O.O., and full-time professional juggler of all things aviation, media, academia, and philanthropy…. because sleep is obviously overrated, right?

My driving passion is to help others become the best version of themselves, do their best work, serve others, & change the world for good.

Starting with my educational background, I am an alumnus of Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. I earned a Master’s in Logistics and Supply Chain Management and a Bachelor’s in Aeronautical Science. During my time at the university, I held various roles, including Flight Check Airman, Assistant Training Manager, and Quality Assurance Mentor. These experiences equipped me with valuable ratings, including M.E.I., CFI, and C.F.I.I., foundational in my corporate pilot role today.

In journalism, my portfolio includes over 330+ articles for Flying Magazine, serving formerly as its Business Editor and currently as a monthly columnist. My journalistic endeavors expanded as a regular on-screen contributor to Flying Magazine’s Business Air T.V. and as a contributor to other esteemed platforms, including the National Business Aviation Association’s (N.B.A.A.) Business Aviation Insider and Redbird Flight Simulations. 

I fell into professional journalism thanks to a “random” lunch meeting at Oshkosh because, apparently, that’s how career paths are made these days—over potato salad and the roar of airplane engines. It might’ve seemed like a career pivot, but before this, I honed my media skills as the Managing Editor for the Avion Newspaper at Embry-Riddle, as an early audio producer for Embry-Riddle’s Webby Award-winning Special VFR series, and through pilot internships at Southwest Airlines focused on technical writing and training development for over 8,000 pilots.

My commitment to community and philanthropy is most evident in my work with Dreams Soar, Inc. I initially joined as the Executive Media Producer, overseeing the marketing and media for a historic global solo flight for S.T.E.M. education in partnership with the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and the broader aviation community. The effort reached over 3,000 students worldwide during its journey and more than 25,000 since. It also earned Shaesta Waiz the 2018 Smithsonian Michael Collins Trophy—an award recognizing significant air and space technology contributions (think ‘Captain Sully’s flight crew of U.S. Airways’ flight 1549, SpaceX, NASA, Lockheed Martin).

In 2021, Shaesta invited me to join the Dreams Soar board. There, I proposed a plan to develop a centralized hub for the aviation industry—for which we were recognized and later cited by the F.A.A. in its Youth in Aviation Task Force report in Fall 2022. To implement this vision, I was appointed as the Chief Operating Officer of Dreams Soar in December 2022. Dreams Soar officially announced its next chapter in March 2023.

Separately, I also co-founded Women Soar Group (W.S.G.) with Shaesta Waiz, a platform for women to express themselves. Through W.S.G., I was the Executive Producer for the podcast “Aviate with Shaesta,” which has garnered listenership in over 90 countries and every U.S. state and accumulated over half a million minutes played. I also expanded the podcast brand to include offshoots like the Lift Equation Roundtable, the LinkedIn Lounge Chat, and the Aviate Social Check-In. The podcast has enjoyed exclusive sponsorship from Atlantic Aviation across four seasons, featuring over 50 episodes. Notable guests have included Ellen Stofan, Patty Wagstaff, Stephanie Chung, Nicole Malachowski, Liz Booker, Carole Hopson, Nicole Stott, and others. We later grew W.S.G.’s brand into a production company, where we partnered strategically with Liz Booker to develop her Literary Aviatrix brand.

This work at W.S.G. has laid the foundation for my newly launched media firm, Massif & Kroo. 

Massif & Kroo is an integrated media firm for people with something to say. It operates under the umbrella of my Drive Phase group of companies, which house all my expansive professional ventures across sectors, including aviation, media, business, and philanthropy.

It’s not all just work. In my personal life, I have a deep love for travel and music, often indulging in a wide range of genres. I also have a nerdy reading system that has sharpened my curiosity across many fields and which has compounded over many years. My heroes are the G.O.A.T.S.: Denzel Washington, Steve Jobs, Ari Emanuel, Jeff Bezos, Reid Hastings, and some other folks in my corner.

On Saturdays, my siblings (God bless them) allow me to get on my weekly soapbox sessions mostly about absolutely nothing. It’s a debate club, but with people you can’t disown—or vice versa, really.

Oh, did I mention that I am Jamaican? The plot thickens.

Keep up with me: I’m on Elon Musk’s new playground X, formerly known as Twitter as @Captainwildes.

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