Ohio Section Manager Joe Phillips, K8QOE (SK)
Joe Phillips, K8QOE, who served as ARRL Ohio Section Manager since 1998, passed away suddenly at his home on Saturday, June 20. He was 68. Licensed in 1959 as KN9SYL, Phillips first joined the ARRL Field Organization as an Official Emergency Station (OES) in 1986. He became a Public Information Officer in 1989 and has served as an Official Observer (OO) since 1997. He was elected Ohio Section Manager in 1998.
A graduate of Youngstown University, Phillips had a career as a journalist and a teacher. He edited six separate ham radio newsletters in Cincinnati before becoming Newsletter Editor for the Ohio Area Repeater Council in 1984, a position he held for five years. In 1986, Phillips organized the first Ohio Repeater Directory and in 1992, organized the Ohio Section Ham Radio Newsletter Contest. He authored a weekly ham radio newspaper column in the Sunday edition of the Cincinnati Enquirer called "Ham Call" and hosted a similarly named program for cable television in the Cincinnati area.
In 1994, Phillips was elected to the Greater Cincinnati Amateur Radio Hall of Fame, and in 1995, he was the recipient of the ARRL's McGan Silver Antenna Award. This award is given annually to a League member who demonstrates outstanding public relations success on behalf Amateur Radio at the local, state or national level. Phillips was excited about having his photo on the cover of the May 2009 issue of QST featuring the annual Dayton Hamvention.
"Throughout a 40-year friendship, Joe and I worked closely together on many occasions," said ARRL Great Lakes Division Director Jim Weaver, K8JE. "From his early days of supporting the county ARES/RACES unit and the Ohio Repeater Council, Joe has always provided energetic and effective leadership with a friendly, personal touch. The magnetism of his style of leadership drew the best from others who soon became solid friends, not mere associates."
ARRL Membership and Volunteer Programs Manager Dave Patton, NN1N, remembered Phillips fondly: "If you have been to Dayton you have met and laughed with Joe. He was the master of the Wouff Hong ceremony. His red jacket is the stuff of legend in Ohio. Joe was more than a Section Manager -- he really gave all of himself to ARRL for 20-plus years. With him dies the last paper newsletter sent to section membership. When I answered his phone calls, he announced his call with 'Here's your Ohio Nightmare.' He loved baseball, maybe more than I did. He was a good man, and he is really going to be missed."