I was born into a family of hams so it was a natural thing for me to enter the amateur radio service. Fortunately, I had a great Elmer, Bob Stark, W5OLG. Bob was my mentor, scout master and good friend. He was always at the top of the DXCC list and I learned a lot about geography by placing pins into a large map in his shack marking exotic countries that he had worked.
Now, I am a periodontist in Harlingen, TX where I have practiced at Valley Periodontal Associates since 1972. In September 2010, I closed my office practice and I am now treating special needs patients, handicapped children and adults in a hospital setting at Valley Baptist Medical Center. I served for ten years as a Board member and as the President of a non profit corporation named Dentists Who Care which employs 128 volunteer dentists to deliver charity care to indigent children in South Texas. Dentists Who Care's volunteers have provided $3.5 million in dental services to over 30,000 indigent children. In 2008, I was appointed by the Governor to serve on the Council of the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS). DSHS supervises the activities of the Texas Commission of Alcohol and Drug Abuse, the Texas Department of Health, the Texas Health Care Information Council and the Texas Department of Mental Health and Mental Retardation. DSHS employs 12,000 personnel and has an annual budget of $3.0 Billion. I was reappointed to the Council of DSHS by Governor Perry in 2010.
Locally, I am a co-founder of the South Texas Amateur Repeater Society (STARS) one of the largest amateur radio organizations in South Texas. Look for the ECHOLINK node K5RAV-R (67509) and the IRLP Node K5RAV (3279) which are linked to 146.70 Mhz, a wide coverage repeater in the Rio Grande Valley. You might also find my APRS HF/VHF Gateway station on LSB 10.151 Mhz and FM 144.39 Mhz.
The digital modes are my favorites and I have been a RTTY operator since 1963. Started with a Model 15 Teletype, but since 1979, have been a computer user. I am using the software package MixW 3.0 now and I am on 20 meters almost every day looking for the next DX contact.
You can find me on the Texas Traffic NET 3873 KHz most evenings and during the day on the Daytime Traffic Net on 7285KHz or on the 7290 KHz Traffic NET.
In 2000, I became the Vice Director of the West Gulf Division of the ARRL. In January 2009, I was appointed Director of the West Gulf Division. My ARRL service has been the highlight of my amateur radio career. I continue to serve as the Director of the West Gulf Division.
Check out my website www.k5rav.com for further information. The West Gulf Division's new web site is www.arrlwgd.org. See you on the air!
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