His Dream Come Through-Meet The CEO of the New International Airport in SVG
Barbadian Hadley Bourne is at the helm at St Vincent and the Grenadines’ new state-of-the-art EC$700 million (BDS$515 million) Argyle International Airport (AIA).
Growing up in St Christopher, Christ Church, within earshot of the Grantley Adams International Airport, Bourne’s dream as a young boy was aviation and the sight of planes overhead making their way into Barbados fuelled his desire to one day be more intricately involved in some aspect of their operation. That day has come at last, and Bourne is excited at finally getting the opportunity to do something he always wanted to do. In the position of CEO of the AIA, the former student of St Christopher Boys’ School and later Combermere School is defying the pronouncements of those who told him there was no scope for aviation in the region, when he attempted to get funding for aeronautical engineering studies back in the 1990s.
Speaking to the SUNDAY SUN from his St Vincent office last week, he said: “I wanted to do aeronautical engineering, but in the early 90s they would not lend me money to do it. They said there was no scope for aviation in the region and I should go and do a full mechanical or electrical degree in Trinidad or Jamaica.” He had just completed engineering studies at the Barbados Community College and armed with an associate degree, he was raring to move on to the next level of study towards attaining his goal. With hopes dashed at this point, Bourne settled for a job with Banks Holdings Limited, working over three years between Banks Breweries and the Pine Hill Dairy. With a ray of hope that his ambition to have a career in aviation was still on track, he left private enterprise for a job in the Civil Service, working as an air traffic controller. He was awarded a National Development scholarship in 2003, went off to the UK to study aviation and earned a bachelor’s degree in aerospace engineering with first class honours. Armed with this first degree, it was back to the control tower at Grantley Adams International Airport and his job as an air traffic controller.