May 3, 2013 | Short URL
This article was originally prepared for and published as the President’s Soapbox column in the April 2013 edition of the Static Sheet, the bi-monthly publication of the Des Moines Radio Amateurs’ Asssociation. May is the last month of my term as DMRAA president.
Looking back, it’s hard to believe it’s been this long. Our general club meeting in May will be the conclusion of my tenure on the DMRAA board, one year as vice president and most recently, two years as president. Scheduling conflicts and additional responsibilities I gained after taking on a new role at work will prevent me from devoting as much time to the DMRAA, although I will continue to participate in the club and support amateur radio as a whole in any capacity that I can.
As a ham that is relatively “green” behind his ears, it’s been a worthwhile experience to learn and grow with the club and overcome challenges together. Moreover, it’s been an absolute privilege to be able to work with such an outstanding board supporting me. I believe that turnover — the so-called “changing of the guard” — is healthy for the club and promotes diversity and new ideas within the organization.
The credit for the club’s successes certainly doesn’t belong to me — it belongs to our board and our vibrant membership base that makes our club what it is today. We have been able to maintain a healthy membership base, a strong relationship with Polk County ARES, the ARRL field organization, we regularly host excellent presentations, we have seen events such as the hamfest and Field Day grow each year even when faced with challenges, our repeater systems are stable, and we remain fiscally sound.
If you have ever thought about becoming more active in the club, I would recommend running for a position on the board without hesitation. When I was first elected as a newly-minted ham, I had reservations. Would I be able to live up to expectations without letting the club members down? Do I possess the knowledge to lead a technological club? Will I get stuck picking up the slack? After becoming involved in the board, those reservations passed, because I learned first-hand that everyone brings some sort of a unique advantage to the table. I have worked with such an excellent board that supports each other.
What else can you do? You can support the club by recruiting new hams, paying dues, supporting the leadership, and most of all, by getting involved!
There are countless people who have helped behind the scenes. In addition to current and former board members, in no particular order, Bill Claypool NU0Q, Dean Madsen N0XR, Mark Globuschutz K0MJG, Dennis O’Brien KA0DOS, Ron Hobbs N0XWI, Bruce Brumm KC0ZMT, Craig Rose KC0YHU, Ben Sinclair KC0ZMX, Kirk Nelson WL7CLI, and Scott Kirstein N0OOD, there’s also Tom Reis N0VPR, Mike Waldron AE0MW, Rick Allen N0CFL, Dan Miller AC0OF, Shane Searcy N0ZXJ, and many others that have provided unquantifiable support to me and the club, helping build onto our successes.
I also want to send a special thank-you to Dr. George Noble KK7FM, our current vice president, who has been a fixture at DMRAA events since I’ve become a ham (and even prior to that), especially at Field Day. George is also retiring from the board. Actually, he’s retiring altogether and will be moving back to the northwestern United States with his wife, Marti, who has also been spotted at Field Day. Prior to me serving as president, George set a very sturdy foundation for me in the same role. George will still have a few months with us before he returns to 7-land, so please be sure to join me in congratulating him on his retirement.
With the resurgence of amateur radio, we have a lot of voices to add to the conversation and helping hands to work on projects and special events, but are we missing yours? There are many opportunities to contribute to the club, including this month’s hamfest and planning for this year’s Field Day, just around the corner in June. If you are interested in serving the club in any capacity, please feel free to reach out to myself or another board member and we’ll get you started. With your helping hands and voice in the conversation, I’m very optimistic about the club’s future!