Composites Manufacturing magazine’s B.E.S.T. recognition program highlights the Bright, Energetic, Skilled, Trailblazers of our industry. This year, we acknowledge seven fascinating professionals who were nominated by their peers for their dedication to the composites industry. These winners represent company owners, researchers, engineers and innovators. They continue to promote composites growth through pioneering research, educational programs and game-changing technologies. With more than 100 years of combined composites knowledge, this collection of the industry’s B.E.S.T. symbolizes the passion and drive for advancing the industry.
Wilson J. Boynton graduated from Canadore College in Ontario, Canada, in 1978 and pursued a career in the helicopter industry. After two years, he joined Great Lakes Airlines – later known as Air Ontario – to handle airplane maintenance, inspections and repairs. The airline received its first advanced technology airplane in 1987, a Bombardier Dash 8-100, but it was severely damaged after three weeks.
“Of the 80 technicians working, none were trained in composites structural repairs,” says Boynton. He tried to find government approved training courses in advanced composites, but they were only offered in the U.S. “So I attended the University of California, Los Angeles and decided to bring my composites knowledge back to Canada.”
In 1992, Boynton started Renaissance Aeronautics Associates Inc. (RAA). In 1996, the company became the first privately owned training institute in Canada for teaching advanced composites aircraft structural repair. Through the years, RAA has taught repair courses worldwide.
In 2005, Boynton introduced Advanced Composites Training (ACT), the training division of the RAA. Boynton says the RAA is the only facility to have both Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Inspector Authorization (IA) approval and the Canadian Council for Aviation and Aerospace accreditation, making the RAA the only company to offer an audited advanced composites training program.
Boynton’s company has trained both seasoned veterans and new engineers. “He is possibly the most knowledgeable individual concerning composite repair from the most basic to structural repairs beyond the manufacturers’ structural repair manual,” says Daniel Deshong, senior inspector at Atlantic Coast Aircraft Services Inc.
Boynton believes that once an individual obtains an essential understanding of the fundamental material technologies, the possibilities are endless. “There’s a shortage of aircraft composite repair workers, and by 2017 there will be in excess of 400,000 jobs available in this field,” Boynton says.
In his free time, Boynton enjoys exploring the wilderness with his wife of 33 years and two daughters.