My first license was as a Novice, WN4VPG, received in high school around 1971. Unfortunately, that 2-year license expired before I could upgrade it. College studies to be an electrical engineer got in the way! After graduating, getting a job, and getting married, I decided it was time to get back on the air. In the late 70s, I took the General and Advanced-class tests and came out as N4BTO. I have been licensed ever since.
After 12 years in the Army Signal Corps, I taught electrical and computer engineering at VA Tech for 16 years. While there, I fell in with a bunch of great operators that led me to join the Southwest Virginia Chapter of the Potomac Valley Radio Club (PVRC). PVRC’s contesting activities spurred me to upgrade to my license to extra-class and then to my current call, N4EL – a much nicer call to send with CW. I am interested in both DXing and contesting and enjoy using SSB, RTTY, FT8, but, preferably, CW.
In 2005, I moved to the Dayton, OH area to be a department head at the Air Force Institute of Technology, the Air Force’s graduate school. I retired in 2016 with plans to put down roots and put up a tower! My home station is an Icom 7610 feeding an Acom A-1000 amplifier. I use a Force-12 C3s tribander at 50’ for 20 m and up and a 43’ vertical antenna, remote tuned at the base, for 20 m and below. Despite fighting the Midwest propagation “disadvantage,” my station does pretty well and I am very happy with it.
In the fall of 2021, I became active in Parks on the Air (POTA), both as a hunter and an activator and that has been a lot of fun. My POTA “station” is built around an Icom 705 (fantastic portable radio).
My wife, Jenny (retired RN) and I live a few miles north of Dayton in the small town of Tipp City. When not doing ham radio, I like to do woodworking, especially wood turning. Jenny is into oil painting and stained glass crafts. Together, we share a love of hiking, camping, and fishing.
I am a member of the ARRL, PVRC, the Long Island CW Club, and now the CW Operators Club!This biography is what appeared in Solid Copy when the member joined CWops.