CONTACT - April 2016
Vol 14 # 4
In this issue:
For those who missed the ARRL webinar on March 1 that discussed the new ARES forms and how to fill them out, the video is online. Hosted by ARRL Emergency Preparedness Manager Mike Corey, KI1U, this is an important video that introduces the new forms and explains how and why to fill them out. These forms are critical to keeping ARRL informed on your activities in the field, and helps up have facts and figures available to show off Amateur Radio’s capabilities to elected officials at every level. The video lasts about an hour.
The Greater Sioux City area comprises three states: Nebraska, Iowa, and South Dakota. When the Emergency Management Director of Dakota County, Nebraska asked that the Amateur Radio Emergency Services program be rebuilt to support county emergency communications needs, hams in the Nebraska portion of Sioux City stepped up. Two Technician classes were quickly formed, and held in the South Sioux City Law Enforcement Center training room, with a seemingly unending supply of coffee, water and treats courtesy of the Emergency Management Director.
After the classes were over, there were 19 new licensees in Dakota County, Nebraska, thanks to the efforts of Lead Instructor J.R. Reider, K0JWR, his wife Paula, K0PSR, and others.
Next up, the group will host an Elmer Day on April 24, where the new licensees can learn about many facets of Amateur Radio, to help keep them interested and active. Dakota County ARES is working on ARRL affiliation and installing three repeaters on Dakota County.
Hats off to the Dakota County team for a great recruiting effort and meeting the request.
Another plug for the annual ARRL Phil McGan Award. This is given to the Amateur who engages in the best volunteer public relations outreach to the non-Amateur community. You don’t have to be a PIO or PIC to qualify for this award.
Nominations must be received by the close of business May 20, 2016. The PR Committee will review all nominations and recommend a winner, if any, for final approval to the ARRL Board of Directors at the July 2016 Board Meeting. Send in your nominations today!
Thanks to these individuals for becoming ARRL PIOs. Please join me in welcoming them to the team!
Timothy E. Gelvin, K3TEG
Andrew W. McLuckie, W3ZW
Cathy Etheredge, N7HVN
Branko Resanowitch, KC4FUA
Tim Kaylor, K4TGK
David Edmonds, WN4AFP
Carl Bosard, AJ4AU
Melvin Seyle, W4MEL
Gordon Mooneyhan, W4EGM
Michelle Mantooth, KK4WQO
Avery Hill, W4QYV
Margie Spangenberg, KK4AGN
Shane Banks, KE5TVB
Every PIO should know how to write a press release. We’ve given you several tips on writing them here in Contact over the years. This article from Paragon PR will give you examples of what else you can do beyond that press release.
It’s easy to want to show your enthusiasm in your releases. Be careful about over-using the exclamation point; it may not have the effect you think it will.
There’s a lot of outreach all of our groups can be doing. I’ll reiterate what I’ve been saying for some time: Whether it’s for schools, your community, your state or elected officials, be sure to report your activities to us here at HQ. Without information on what you are doing in your area, we can’t help you promote yourself, and we can’t help promote Amateur Radio to influential groups across the country.
As was reported at the beginning of this month’s CONTACT, the video of the ARRL webinar on forms reporting is a very good piece of information. I recommend that every field appointee watch it, so we all understand what information needs to be reported and why.
We will soon be shifting our focus from snowstorms to thunderstorms. Hurricane season isn’t too far away, either. And of course, Field Day is just over ten weeks away. Now is a good time to freshen up your media contact list, create those social media accounts, and check in with your served agencies (if you don’t do so regularly).
Thanks for all you do.
Sean Kutzko, KX9X
ARRL Media & Public Relations Manager