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Hi!  I'm Neil Rapp.  Thanks for stopping by my QRZ page.

7/17/2016 - Today I'm celebrating 40 years as a ham!

Neil Rapp was born in Vincennes, Indiana on September 22, 1970. He is the son of Delbert Ray Rapp, WB9UKG (SK) and Margaret Louise (Osmon) Rapp, WD9HEE (SK). At the age of 5 years, Neil became the youngest person in the world to pass the Federal Communications Commission Amateur Radio examination and obtain a ham radio license. He drew international attention from the media, including every ham radio magazine in the United States and Japan, local TV and radio, the National Enquirer, and the CBS morning news. He has been featured in several ham radio books, including "How to be a Ham." At age 6, he was the youngest to pass the FCC technician class license. At age 7, Neil was the youngest to pass the FCC general class license. And at age 9, he was the youngest to pass the FCC advanced class license. At age 18, he received the Amateur Extra class license. (These records have since been broken.)  In February, 2016, he began as a voice talent for Amateur Radio Newsline (www.arnewsline.org) and started his own call in talk radio show "Ham Talk LIVE!" (www.hamtalklive.com) In 2017, Neil became a contributing editor of the National Contest Jounal (NCJ) for "Next Gen Contesting".  He also became a member of the ARISS USA Education Committee.

Neil sponsors the Bloomington High School South Amateur Radio Club (K9SOU) in Bloomington, Indiana, where he teaches AP, Honors, and Organic Chemistry. He sponsored the William Henry Harrison High School Amateur Radio Club (WA9HHS) in Evansville, Indiana from 1995 to 2001, where he also taught AP Chemistry, Advanced Chemistry, Chemistry, and coached basketball. Neil was presented with the 2004 ARRL Professional Educator of the Year Award on October 4, 2005 as a result of his work in ham radio education. Neil was named Amateur of the Year by the Indiana Radio Club Council in November, 2014.  He won the IRCC Technical Excellence award in July, 2003.  He was awarded a Monroe County Educator of the Year Leading Light award in February, 2014 for his work with ham radio in schools.  He is currently the president and trustee of Electronic Applications Radio Service (EARS) W9EAR, and also a member of Radio Club of America (RCA), the Old Post Amateur Radio Society (OPARS) W9EOC in Vincennes, Indiana, and the West Chester Amateur Radio Association (WC8VOA) in West Chester, Ohio at the home of the National Voice of America Museum of Broadcasting.  He is a life member of ARRL, and is the youngest to ever be a member of QCWA (age 29) since joining in January, 2001.  Neil is also a past secretary-treasurer and past member of the Bloomington Amateur Radio Club (BARC) K9DIY, past-president of the University of Southern Indiana Amateur Radio Club (USIARC), W9MOK, former member of the Fairfield Amateur Radio Association (FARA) W8PRH, and Monroe County Repeater Association,  Neil was the chairman of the Evansville (IN) hamfest for 17 years, and also served as an Assistant Central Division Director of the ARRL. He also is a contact examiner for Laurel VEC, and is a certified examiner for ARRL-VEC. He was previously a contact examiner with W5YI and it's commercial branch, National Radio Examiners.

Some highlights of his teaching career include sending a protein crystallization experiment to the International Space Station, talking to the ISS on 2 meters, and receiving several grants including a Best Buy te@ch grant and an ARRL Education & Technology Program grant for a school ham radio station.  Neil also attended the ARRL Teacher's Institute at ARRL HQ in Newington, CT in 2004.  He also mentored many students, in particular Padraig Lysandrou KC9UUS, who was the 2013 Newsline Young Ham of the Year, ARRL Goldfarb Scholarship recipient, Dayton Hamvention Youth Forum speaker, Hiram Percy Maxim award winner, QST author and cover plaque winner, and Cyprus DXpedition leader among other recognitions for his exploration of ham radio.

Neil is a graduate of Vincennes Lincoln High School (1988), Vincennes University (A.A. - Pre-medicine, 1990), and University of Southern Indiana (B.S. - Chemistry, Secondary Education - Chemistry, 1993; M.S. - Secondary Education, 2000). He has also attended Butler, Purdue, and Miami (OH) for summer classes. He has studied in the Instuctional Systems Design doctoral (Ed.D) program at the University of Kentucky.

Neil currently resides in Bloomington, Indiana.

WAS | RCC | CARF #197 | YLISSB #11400 | ARRL Life Member | 100 Watts and a Wire #1803

Novice (WN9VPG)—July 17, 1976—Age 5
Technician—Sept. 15, 1977—Age 6
General—June 7, 1978—Age 7
Advanced—Sept. 16, 1980—Age 9
Extra—Dec. 31, 1990—Age 20


This is a picture of my novice 5 wpm code exam that was published in 73 Magazine.  The instructors and other students in the class signed it as witnesses that I actually did pass the test at age 5.  The minimum requirement was 25 characters in a row.  This, my second attempt, was 104 in a row.

These pictures are in an article in the December, 1976 edition of 73 Magazine (page 6), which is now available online at:


This is a feature video from the Leading Light award in 2014.

neil rapp final from Smithville on Vimeo.


From ARRL Teachers' Institute in Newington, CT - August, 2004

I have had two special event opportunities to work in the press box at Lucas Oil Stadium for our high school football games.  This is the first one, where I announced the entire game.  At a later game, I was the spotter for the announcer and did halftime.


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