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The Scenic Air Safaris' team consists of a diverse range of experts in all aspects of East Africa. From our professional guides, tour operators and expert experienced bush pilots to our managing director -  a native of Kenya and 20 year veteran of the industry. When you fly with Scenic Air Safaris you fly with the best.   

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TORBEN PETER RUNE

Managing Director

A passionate wildlife conservationist, a private pilot for the past 29 years and a founding partner and Managing Director, Torben has vast experience within International Tourism. Scenic Air Safaris, a highly regarded pioneering luxury air safari brand, was born from his sheer passion of flying, for adventure and for Africa, the combination of which gave birth to the concept which is now Scenic Air Safaris. Torben studied Marketing and Business Studies in South Africa, returning to Kenya in 1994 and joined Southern Cross Safaris as a partner and Managing Director. In addition, Torben is also a partner and director of Bench Africa Ltd (Sydney based African wholesaler), Connoisseur Safaris, Satao Camp, Satao Elerai and Out of Africa Collection. He is also Chairman of Greenpark Water Services and shareholder in Great Rift Valley Lodge. He is a passionate outdoors enthusiast, a founding partner of the internationally acclaimed 7 to 3 Kilimanjaro Mountain bike challenge, a trustee of the Satao community and wildlife trust and past trustee of the East African Whale Shark Trust. He is also an avid ‘Rhino Charger’ leading the team as the driver of car No.28. The team raises in excess of US$ 15,000 every year for the noble Rhino Ark charity. Torben is based in Mombasa where he lives with his wife Beth and their two children.

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SIMON PENFOLD

Marketing and Operations Manager

Simon was born to an aviation family in East Africa, his father having been a pioneering ‘ Wing Safari’ pilot in the 1960’s. He read Airlines & Tourism in Glasgow, Scotland, has travelled extensively and like the majestic salmon, returned to his spawning grounds in Kenya where he managed a destination management company and to continue with his passion for aviation and for tourism. Simon now manages the Scenic Air Safaris marketing development program, always looking for new ideas, new markets as well as developing new flying safari experiences within the region. He is passionate about the protection of endangered species and being an avid outdoor enthusiast, salt & freshwater fly fisherman, Simon loves to balance his passions for aviation and flyfishing, he will never travel without his fly rod!

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Capt MURTAZA S. WALIJEE

Chief Pilot and Host

Captain Murtaza Walijee leads our team of pioneering aviators, and is credited with over 5,000hrs of bush flying in East and southern Africa. Flying since the age of 17, before he had a driving licence, Murtaza holds an Airline Transport Pilot Licence (ATPL), is a certified flight instructor with an instrument rating. He absolutely relishes the challenge of 'bush flying' and in particular, flying and guiding the intrepid Ultimate Across Africa 14 day flying safari. Murtaza gains the most enjoyment from taking people to truly remote places that they never dreamed could be so beautiful. Murtaza finds the most spectacular scenic flights to be over the wildebeest Migration in both the Masai Mara and the Serengeti, the Pink Flamingos over Lake Natron and the low level scenic flight over the Mahale Mountains on the shores of Lake Tanganika. Murtaza is from Mombasa where he lives with his wife and two children.

 

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Capt SAM MBUGUA

Pilot and Host

Captain Sam Mbugua, one of the stars of our show, is as passionate about being a pilot as he is inspired by meeting new guests and showing off ‘his own’ Africa as he affectionately calls it. Sam is Instrument rated and a certified flight instructor, credited with over 4,700hrs of bush flying experience. Sam wanted to be a doctor but thankfully for us, he chose to be a pilot and left the biology class behind. Sam joined us in June of 2016 and is inspired by discovering new, off the beaten track destinations, discovering species of wildlife and he loves to inspire the younger generation of ‘potential aviators’. He is a passionate and active outdoors enthusiast, photographer, farmer and swimmer. Sam lives in Nairobi.

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SHARLET TANDI

Operations and Sales Support

Sharlet is our first point of contact at Scenic Air Safaris. Having always had a passion for travel and for wildlife, she joined the Scenic Air Safaris team out of sheer passion for what we do and she connects our guests with the places they dream of visiting on Safari. She holds a Bachelor of Business Management, with marketing option and diploma in Cabin Crew and ticketing. Sharlet has gained valuable experience within the aviation business as a whole, she is passionate about the adventure of discovering new corners of East Africa and her favourite destination above all others is the Masai Mara.