Hello to all. I am grateful to now be a member of CWops and as others have helped me, I look forward to helping others learn CW.
I have had a lifelong fascination with radio technology and as a child I spent many hours reading books from the library on amateur radio but having no resources available to me at the time I wasn’t able to earn a license until 1996 while I was in graduate school. Even though I had taught myself Morse code and forgotten it a few times over the years, the code requirement had passed by that point. Having only the Technician license at that time and no HF equipment, I lost interest in local repeater operations. While I maintained my license, I did not return to active ham radio activities until 2016. During that time, I married my wife Christine in 1996, earned my Ph.D. in 1998, and had 5 children. At the end of 2016 I upgraded to General 2017 and by early 2017 I passed the Extra exam. Feeling that I missed out on all the fun and needing another big challenge, I signed up for the April 2017 Level 1 CWA class.
My first HF rig was a FT-991 and my first key was a Begali Expedition, but now I am running a Kenwood TS-590SG and I use either a ZN-9 iambic key or a Begali Blade straight key. As for an antenna, I have a EFHW dipole, but the installation is a bit limited to the power lines along the property line.
I have had great fun taking the various levels of the CWops CWA classes and having the pleasure of meeting up with Tom, WA9CW and Steve, WD4CFN who have been great CW mentors.
Professionally, I have a Ph.D. in Materials Science and currently work as the Director of Product Development at Platypus Technologies near Madison, WI. I lead applied surface science research and commercialization efforts for industrial hygiene sensors.
From 2008 until 2020 I worked as a Staff Engineer at A.O. Smith Corp. I worked on developing / improving / implementing sensors into their various products.
Finally, as a Scoutmaster in the BSA, I am doing what I can to build interest in ham radio with Scouts. For the past 3 years I have helped organize our local JOTA event and I enjoy helping scouts earn their Radio merit badge.