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Like many future hams in the 1960s, my interest in radio began as an AM broadcast and shortwave listener. I still have my Knightkit Star Roamer receiver and my Popular Electronics "Monitor Station" certificate, WPE9IGS. It is really sad that most of my favorite shortwave stations from that era have now gone QRT. Later, many of my friends and I got interested in CB radios. I built a Knightkit C-22, but since I was under 18, my father dutifully completed the FCC form to get our Class D license, KLK-1543. My friends and I had a lot of fun with those radios. We often worked on our school homework together over the air. Two of them later became Novices at the same time I did and we started a school club station together.

Amateur radio officially began for me at age 15 in December 1967 when the FCC issued my Novice call, WN9WNQ. Novices could only operate CW on 80, 40 and 15 meters with no more than 75 watts input power and crystal controlled transmitters back then. Six months later I upgraded to General at the downtown Chicago FCC office and my call became WA9WNQ. Finally in the fall of 1981, I upgraded to Extra and was issued KK9H. I still operate mostly CW and love to chase DX, but I also enjoy Phone, RTTY and PSK31. Field Day is one of my all time favorite ham radio activities and in late July you will find me operating from Washington Island, WI. I am an active board member of both the North Shore Radio Club and the Northern Illinois DX Assn. which also includes the W9DXCC convention. I belong to the ARRL, QCWA #30253, GERITOL #2208, CWops #480, 10-10 #14855 and SKCC #17755. I currently have 328 DXCC entities confirmed along with 5BDXCC plus 30, 17 and 12 meters, DXCC on CW, Phone and RTTY, WAZ and VUCC on 6M.

My station consists of an Icom IC-7800 and IC-PW1 connected to either a HyGain AV-640 vertical, a 135 ft. Inverted-L fed through a Drake MN-2700 tuner versus ground or a 3-element 6M yagi at 35 feet. For local VHF/UHF I use a Kenwood TM-V71A, Motorola XPR-4550 and an Icom IC-38A. I operate packet radio, APRS and WinLink with a Kantronics KPC-3+ and Kenwood TM-281A. When operating portable I use an Elecraft K3/100 with a PAR 40/20 End-Fedz or a 6M Moxon. While mobile I have another TM-V71A and a Byonics TinyTrak 3 for voice and APRS. I am also active on D-Star with an Icom IC-91AD.

I am married and have two adult children. Professionally, I am a financial consultant and registered investment advisor. I also volunteer as a FINRA securities dispute arbitrator. In 1997 I was elected Village President (mayor) of Northfield and served in that capacity for eight years. Having lived there as a child and for most of my adult life made that experience one of the most interesting and rewarding volunteer things I have ever done. Northfield has a population of just over 5400 and is located about 17 miles north of downtown Chicago. Currently I am serving as a trustee of the Northfield Police pension fund. I have a BA in economics from the University of the South (Sewanee) and an MBA from Vanderbilt University. My other interests include golf, fishing, skeet, WW2 history and Chicago Blackhawk hockey.

73, Don

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