In high school in New Jersey in 1970 I got a Novice license, WN2IRY. W2KXD (SK) lived down the street and gave me the 5 wpm CW and theory exams. With two years of paper-route money, I bought a used SX-115 receiver at Harvey Radio in Manhattan. I built a one-tube transmitter with a 50C5, and W2KXD got it going (replaced a bad paper capacitor). Worked a few states with a low dipole before my Novice ticket expired, and I went QRT for decades.
Jump ahead to 2002, and I took the theory exam and another 5 wpm test at the Red Cross in St. Paul, Minnesota and got my extra call, which I still have. Bought a used TS-820 from a local ham, who kindly threw in a Cushcraft R5. I put a folded dipole up in the trees and started making regular QSOs with those antennas.
Moved to California in 2009 and kept using that TS-820. Built a Norcal 40 kit and did some QRP. A few years later I got a KX3 and spent a year doing CW QRP only (propagation was great – worked the world on 10 watts). Then in 2013 an extremely good friend and business partner gave me an Elecraft K3, amp, tuner, and panadapter, my current main station. Took down the vertical and folded dipole and put up an 80m OCF inverted V (it doesn’t know it’s not supposed to work on 30m and 15m). Put the microphone away and became a CW ragchewer. A few months ago, W7ZDX got me interested in CWOps, advised me to enroll in CWA and do some CWTs, and here I am!
My wife Caroline is a strong supporter of my ham radio hobby – even with my shack in the living room. We have five kids, all grown up and scattered across the US: in Hawaii, Minnesota, Minnesota, New Jersey and Oregon. The youngest has a Technician ticket, but she and I are the only hams in the extended family. Lucky to be able to visit my parents in New Jersey every three months – they just celebrated their 72nd wedding anniversary.
My work has always been in engineering for “active implantable medical devices” such as pacemakers and defibrillators. First with a plutonium-powered (!) pacemaker startup near Pittsburgh, and then 30 years with a French manufacturer, including 15 years living and working in France. After that I was a founder (and worker) at two startups in Silicon Valley. Pretty-much retired a year ago.
A more recent hobby is flying single-engine airplanes, which I rent from a local club. Been a jogger since high school. I like to read fiction, mostly modern American, and recommendations are always welcome. Counting on making new CWOps friends on the air – especially ragchewers.
My thanks to my nominator, sponsors, and my CWA class: Joe KK5NA (great teacher and leader), Chuck WA7ECF, Glenn NE1TO, and Tim G4XWJ (fine classmates and new friends too.This biography is what appeared in Solid Copy when the member joined CWops.