John Scott Redd, K0DQ, Awarded Nation's Top Intelligence Award
Vice Admiral John Scott Redd, USN (ret), K0DQ, received the National Security Medal in a White House ceremony earlier this month. In one of his last official duties as President of the United States, George W. Bush recognized Redd for "his more than 40 years of exceptional service to the Nation, strengthening its intelligence capabilities and improving national security," and called Redd "an innovator, a strategic thinker, an inspirational leader and a dedicated servant to the Nation, respected for his vision, courage and integrity." During his remarks, the President also thanked Redds' wife Donna for her service over many years. The Redd's daughter and sons also attended the White House ceremony.
The National Security Medal is America's highest intelligence award. It is awarded to any citizen of the United States with distinguished achievements or outstanding contributions, on or after 26 July 1947, in the field of intelligence relating to the national security of the United States of America. Previous recipients of the National Security Medal include Bill Donovan, founder of the Office of Strategic Services (OSS); J. Edgar Hoover, former FBI Director; Robert Gates, US Secretary of Defense, and Brent Scowcroft, National Security Advisor to Presidents Gerald Ford and George H. W. Bush.
In 1995, Redd founded and was named commander of the Navy's Fifth Fleet. The fleet operates in waters surrounding the Middle East and is the only new fleet since World War II. He served as director of strategic plans and policy on the Joint Chiefs of Staff from 1996 until he retired from the Navy two years later. Redd was named Chief Operating Officer of the Coalition Provisional Authority in March 2004, but the White House recalled him a month later to lead the commission that examined the intelligence failures that led up to the Iraq war. He earlier served as Deputy Administrator and Chief Operating Officer of the Coalition Provisional Authority in Baghdad, for which he received the Secretary of Defense Medal for Exceptional Public Service.
In August 2005, Congress confirmed Redd -- a 1966 graduate of the US Naval Academy and a Fulbright Scholar -- as Director of the National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC); he retired in November 2007. The NCTC is the nation's repository for counterterrorism intelligence and sets the nation's war plan for fighting terrorists. The center has few employees of its own and, instead, brings together approximately 400 analysts and other employees from agencies such as the CIA, the Homeland Security Department and the FBI to pore over data collected by other agencies. The NCTC houses the nation's terrorist watch list and distributes it throughout the government nightly. It holds video teleconferences three times a day to keep the White House and the intelligence community informed about terrorist activity and counter-terror operations. "We say, 'Mr. President, here's what the intelligence community believes, and here's where agencies disagree,'" Redd said in describing how the NCTC operates. "So now he can see what the disagreement is and why. Because intelligence is not an arithmetic thing, there's a lot of judgment that goes into it."
An active ham, contester and DXer for more almost 50 years, Redd -- a native of Sydney, Iowa -- enjoys both CW and phone. In 1971, Redd, then K0DQI, won the CQ World Wide DX Contest (phone) from Mexico as 6D1AA. He also won the ARRL International DX Contest, both phone and CW, in 1972 from Mexico as XE1IIJ; this was the first time a single operator surpassed 10,000 contacts in a contest. In 1973, Redd won the ARRL Phone DX Contest from the DX side (Mexico) as 6J9AA, and in 1986, he won the ARRL CW from the US as W3GRF. All of these wins were as Single Operator, High Power. Redd went on to place third in his first CQ Worked All Prefix (WPX) (CW) contest in 1995 as A92Q from Bahrain. Throughout his ham radio career, Redd has held many DX call signs: P40Q, 3V8DQ, A92Q, XE1IIJ, 4A4AA/1, 6J9AA, 6D1AA, 6G1AA, 6J9AA, 4C5AA and 4C9AA, just to name a few.
In 2008, Redd was inducted into the CQ Amateur Radio Hall of Fame. The CQ Amateur Radio Hall of Fame honors those individuals, whether licensed hams or not, who have made significant contributions to Amateur Radio, and those amateurs who have made significant contributions either to Amateur Radio, to their professional careers or to some other aspect of life on our planet.