After a couple years of short wave listening, I got my Novice license in 1983. The Vienna Wireless Society class was a big help in learning code as was practice with my father, WB4NBI, and my mother, who was a code intercept operator at Bletchley Park during WWII.
I quickly upgraded and became N4KEZ. I held that call until I realized how often I was entered in contest logs as N4CZ – the “KEZ” suffix is terrible for CW contesting! I upgraded to Extra and became KW2A, a much better call for CW.
When I began CW contesting I realized that I’d have to get serious about using paddles so began practicing with the CW Academy lessons along with sessions on RufzXP software. My greatest difficulty was breaking the years-long practice of copying with pencil and pad. The Academy lessons emphasized “head copy” and RufzXP drove it home by drilling keyboard entry at higher and higher speeds. As my copy speed increased and I got used to typing directly to a logger, I really began to enjoy contesting.
My wife and I both grew up and worked in the Washington, DC area where I spent 30 years as a photographer for the American National Red Cross headquarters. My son works in the same field with a group of photographers and digital technicians in Portland, OR.
I enjoy sailing and motorcycling and still do a little photography. My radio interests center around QRP contesting, DXing and experimenting with simple antennas. Since we anticipate moving to a retirement community within the next few years, I’ve been testing indoor antennas so I have a plan to keep contesting even when I can’t have an outdoor wire up.This biography is what appeared in Solid Copy when the member joined CWops.