The hamfest scheduled for Saturday March 21st has been postponed. No further details are available at this time. Check https://k0ltc.org/midwinter-madness/ for updates as they become available.
The January Board of Directors meeting minutes have been published. I think its important to bring you up to date on some important matters. Let's start with some good news... Our former Dakota Division Directors and Vice Directors retired at the end of the January board meeting from their First Vice President positions. Both were elected Honorary Vice Presidents. Both have ongoing active roles in amateur radio near and far. Jay Bellows, KÃ˜QB, served 22 years on the board and continues to serve as International Amateur Radio Union (IARU) Region 2 (The Americas) Treasurer. Greg Widin, KÃ˜GW, served 12 years on the board and continues to serve as Chairman of the Logbook Of The World Committee (LOTW). I'm very fortunate to have two (and for a while three) mentors, sitting in the board room me, for the past four years. Jay and Greg, along with former Director Kent Olson, KAÃ˜LDG, introduced me to my fellow directors and the staff at ARRL HQ. They also brought me up to speed on prior board actions and provided historical context regarding issues being discussed by either the ARRL or IARU. Having four leaders from the Dakota Division, in the board room, at the same time, has been an experience I'll never forget. Thanks gents and thank you Vice Director Lynn Nelson for continuing to serve the Dakota Division with me. The Board of Directors held officer elections at the January board meeting. I think its important the members know the results of these elections which are conducted by secret ballot. Chief Executive Officer Dr. Howard Michel was not re-elected. 6 directors voted "yes" and 9 directors voted "no" to re-elect CEO Michel. I voted to retain Dr. Michel because I thought he was making improvements in day-to-day operations of our non-profit organization that has about 80 employees and about a 15 million dollar annual operating budget. I judge the CEO on their merits of running a non-profit organization not their CW sending speed, number of DXCC entities verified or their contest scores. My fellow board members have a considerable challenge to find our 3rd CEO in as many years. A search committee has been formed to hire a new CEO with experience running a non-profit organization, managing a large staff, enthusiasm for amateur radio, doesnâ€™t mind New England weather and possibly paying higher state income taxes than they have experienced in their home state. Two other officer elections had two candidates each: Incumbent President Rick Roderick, K5UR, received 8 votes. Challenger, Pacific Division Director, Jim Tiemstra, K6JAT, received 7 votes. New International Affairs Vice President Rod Stafford, W6ROD, received 13 votes to challenger Bruce Frahm, K0BJ, 2 votes. Elected Without Contest: First Vice President Michael Raisbeck, K1TWF Second Vice President Bob Vallio, W6RGG Interim CEO and Secretary Barry Shelley, N1VXY Treasurer Rick Niswander, K7GM Chief Financial Officer Diane Middleton, W2DLM The link to the full meeting minutes are posted at http://www.arrl.org/news/arrl-board-of-directors-re-elects-president-rick-roderick-k5ur Committee reports are posted at http://www.arrl.org/committee-reports I'll serve as the Program and Services Committee Chair in 2020. Work on Capitol Hill continues. The legislative advocacy committee is working with elected leaders, and their office staff, to create new legislation to provide reasonable accommodation of Amateur Radio antennas. With the impeachment proceedings behind us, I think Washington D.C.'s focus will turn to November elections. This means the process of crafting a bill, finding a sponsor and cosponsors and getting a House committee to review the bill will likely take all year and drift in 2021. I ask each member to review the proposed HF band plan that I mentioned in my last bulletin to members. Digital mode operation has become very popular and many days digital contacts make up the majority of QSOs uploaded to Logbook Of The World (LOTW). A committee was formed to consider the needs and wants of CW, digital and phone operators when drawing up this plan. Also considered in the process were IARU regional band plans. Please file your comments, online, at http://www.arrl.org/bandplan by February 19th. Have you checked out the new ARRL magazine? "On The Air," will be published every other month and available to all members online. If you're new to amateur radio or don't feel QST has articles that most interest you, please give "On The Air" a read. When you renew your membership you can elect to receive QST or "On The Air" by mail. Remember both magazines are available to members, online, as a member benefit. The 2020 hamfest season is upon us. Check out the Division calendar at https://www.arrldakota.org/calendar.html for an event near you.