Women of Wilderness: Magda Venter - Wilderness Air Namibia Pilot

Jun 25, 2014 People of Wilderness
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After years of studying and gaining a Masters’ Degree in Private Law, Magda returned to her teenage dream of flying, joining Wilderness Air Namibia in early 2013 as a pilot.

Magda Venter, Wilderness Air Namibia pilot

Born in Pretoria, South Africa, into a loving family, Magda spent a good part of her childhood living a conventional life. That all changed somewhat when her father’s diplomatic work saw the family move from country to country on a regular basis. For Magda, this was a positive change in her life and one that brought her much happiness as a child.

Magda thoroughly enjoyed her time in Kenya. It introduced a love for wildlife and an appreciation for conservation into her whole family. Weekends and holidays were spent in the Masai Mara, Mount Kenya, Lake Baringo or Naivasha surrounded by wildlife and most importantly by the warmth and love of the Kenyan people. It was during this time that she was first introduced to small aircraft. She took to the skies with ease, however it still did not cross anyone’s mind that one day she would be a pilot in command of a similar aircraft.

As a teenager, Magda spent a few years in Hungary. Her friends and the excellent education in Budapest opened her mind to the idea that the world was her oyster and that nothing was impossible with the right attitude. During these years, she learnt about freedom and responsibility and developed a real love for flying. While her father never had any intention of inspiring her to become a pilot, he constantly took her to air shows, which only developed her passion.

After completing high school, Magda’s dream of becoming a pilot remained distant as her parents urged and convinced her to study Law. She spent five years at the University of Stellenbosch and received a Master’s degree. With her qualifications intact, Magda joined a law firm but never forgot her dreams of becoming a pilot. After only one year at the firm, she decided to follow her passion and gave up her job, apartment and car in order to go to flying school. After taking this leap of faith, she was employed by Wilderness Air Namibia three years later.

Magda says, “Wilderness Air has combined my history and different passions into one. I get to see breathtaking landscapes, I stay at outstanding places and camps and am surrounded by extraordinary people and most of all I get to have a great view from my office in the cockpit.

“Looking back, perhaps where I have ended up should have been expected. My parents were instrumental on the path I chose; they gave me the confidence, support and love I needed. In short, they gave me the wings to fly.”

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