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Born: Butler, PA (One of the best places in the USA) - Well, at least it was until the local ‘Hot Dog Shop’ closed down! – What a setback for Butler….

Following Dad’s (K3HJH) footsteps, I obtained my Novice License in May of 1976 at age 14. - I guess I just needed more in life than tinkering with a battery, light bulb and a hunk of hook-up wire. "Bicycle Mobile was waiting to be born."

Upgraded to General Class, Dec 1976 - "Traded my Key for a Microphone" Found that this was much easier to do on a bicycle!

My Dad and I both upgraded to “Advanced” during a 1977 family camping trip that passed through Buffalo, NY. We spontaneously stopped in at the local FCC office in Buffalo to take our test, I guess reading QST and spending lots of time on the air paid off.

Butler Area Senior High class of 1980 – Graduated the most likely to be a ‘HAM’

USN 1980 - 1988 Groton, CT. & Pearl Harbor, HI. “CTM - Spook Stuff”. I got a job that was right up my alley, installing special purpose radio gear onboard submarines – they didn’t let me operate very much though, they mostly only kept me around to fix things when they broke.

ArgoSystems Inc. 1988 - 1995, Norfolk, VA. (Defense Elect. ESM/ECM) - I left the navy behind to pursue a new career. I found this cool job working on special electronic equipment aboard the navies fast attack submarines. YES, it was almost the same job as before – but now I was a civilian; didn’t have to wear a uniform, and got paid for working overtime. Not only that, but now I got to play on the surface ships too.

Statcom Inc. 1995 - 1997, Norfolk, VA. (Defense Elect. ESM) – Same job as above, but due to the company's decision to sell off our Norfolk field office, the name on the front door changed to protect the special interests of those inside wanting to stay gainfully employed.

RDSI 1997 - 1998, Virginia Beach, VA. (Defense Elect. ESM) – Once again, they changed the name on the front door. Same delightful group of people inside, but now we even got to move down the road aways to a new office building. Another great thing was that along with being able to stay employed, I now, even get to work on special electronic equipment aboard submarines and surface ships. -- OK, I tried to trick you; it is really the exact same job that I have been doing all along.

ArgoSystems Inc. 1998 - 1999, Sunnyvale, CA. (Defense Elect. ESM/ECM) – I packed up my bags and left the East coast behind; joined forces with some of my old colleagues at Argo Systems Sunnyvale / Boeing Corporation. Here I got to work on special electronic systems aboard naval submarines and surface ships. ‘What do you mean you heard this story before?

K-MAR Industries Inc. 1999 - 2000, Ft. Drum, NY (Doppler Radar, Wx Maint. & Snow removal engineer) – Well, well, well, after yet another plant closure, I found myself spending a few seasons in upstate NY (winter, winter and winter). Here I got to work on electronic weather monitoring equipment used by the Fort Drum weather forecasters. They failed to tell me that I first had to dig my way through the snow banks in order to find the equipment, and then dig my way back out in order to go back home. But once I was home, I could kick off my work boots, change my socks and put on a nice dry pair of boots so that I could go out and shovel the driveway and sidewalks around the house.

Condor Systems Inc. 2000 - 2002, Morgan Hill, CA (Defense Elect. ESM) – As if I missed playing this game, Condor Systems bought out Argo Systems/Boeing Electronic Defense division, of which I rejoined so that I could work on special electronic equipment used on Submarines and Surface ships. Hey, - At least there is no snow to shovel here in Silicone Valley.

EDO/RSS Corp. 2002- Dec. 2007, Morgan Hill, CA (EDO Reconnaissance and Surveillance Systems) (Defense Electronics) – You know the drill, it was time once again to change the name on the front door, and yes – I still get to work on special purpose electronic surveillance systems.

Finally, after all these years, I finally took the time to move up to the highest tier. In April of 2007, after over thirty years as an amateur, and over 25 years in the defense electronics industry, I finally got around to getting my Amateur Extra Class ticket. And not to be outdone; Dad got his a few months later.

ITT/EDO-RSS Corp. 2007 - Present, Morgan Hill, CA (EDO Reconnaissance and Surveillance Systems – bought out by ITT) – And now after a 3 way split, our company is now under the name Exelis Inc.

Well it has been a while sense I've updated my post and as I looked down through the list I realized that I needed to update at least one thing -  Yep; new company. I now work for Harris Corporation. They took over Exelis. I still have the same desk, use the same coffee pot to start the day and even use the same parking stall outside but have a new badge and my paychecks have a new name on them.

I'm not really to close to retirement yet, but wonder how many other updates I will need between now and then?

It almost looks like I can't keep a steady job - doesn't it?


7596111 Last modified: 2016-09-28 02:00:13, 5368 bytes

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