Will Hascall, KC9OKM: Conference Review Coordinator
WI ARES/RACES 2020 Conference Summary
Amateur Radio operators train to adapt to diverse and changing conditions, to be flexible in a disaster so that we might be able to get messages out no matter what. That spirit of adaptation was reflected in the 22nd annual Wisconsin ARES/RACES Virtual Conference & ARRL Convention 2020. Most attendees were allowed to stay home and attend virtually in whatever way worked for them....
Even though last year's conference attendance was slightly higher, we had an impressive turnout with 107 people registered. Plus with the advantage of a virtual conference we have many individuals attend from outside Wisconsin, joining us from other states.
Wisconsin Section Emergency Coordinator (SEC) Kyle Schaefer (KC9SDK) opened the conference by thanking everyone for attending and adapting to the new format so easily. The next presentation was by Section Manager Patrick Moretti (KA1RB).
Then Kermit Carlson W9XA, ARRL Central Division Director, spoke on changes at the ARRL. During the January ARRL Board of Directors meeting there were officer elections and did not elect to continue with the current CEO. Mr. Barry Shelly, N1VXY, was named as interim CEO until a new one was hired. When COVID-19 shut things down, the ARRL headquarters quickly adapted by going completely virtual. The ARRL create a new manager, the Director of Emergency Management and the position was filled by Mr. Paul Gilbert, KE5ZW. The ARRL Board decided in July to hold the meeting through Zoom. In August, a new CEO was hired, Mr. David Minster, NA2AA. Kermit then talked about the FCC being pressured to release the 3GHz spectrum for mobile broadband use and how that affects Amateur Radio and said that the next piece of spectrum which will be looked at is the 5GHz band. While the FCC is also announcing new application fees, A new application fee of $50 was proposed which could severely affect amateurs. Kermit closed by talking about ARRL Field Day during COVID-19 and ARES Connect improvements thanks to the help of many good volunteers.
SEC Kyle Schaefer (KC9SDK) presented this year's awards. EC of the Year Awards were presented to two individuals: Kelley Becker, KD9LQW, EC Monroe County and Patti Halgunseth, KD7VGB, EC Outagamie County. The Don Michalski Leadership Award was presented to Denny Rybicke, K9LGU, Wisconsin ARES-RACES Section Traffic Manager. Congratulations to all award recipients!
The first presenter was the EC of St. Croix County, John Kruk (N9UPC), who spoke about digital radio modes and how they fit into the toolbox of Amateur Radio. Then the following two presentations were by Arron Diers (KCOWKP) who is a Network Communications System Analyst at ADV. He presented two sessions on AREDN (Amateur Radio Emergency Data Network), the first session being a general overview of what AREDN is and the next was how to actually get AREDN setup for yourself.
All the presentations were well attended and questions were asked in the live YouTube chat. And they were either answered in the chat, in the live video feed, or after the presentation during Q& A portion. There were no major technical difficulties during the conference and all the comments in text chat were positive. If you participated in this virtual conference, please remember to fill out the survey to help us develop the conference for next year.
To view the conference in its entirety click on the link below.
Many thanks to Josh Roskos Conference IT Coordinator, for making this 2020 WI ARES/RACES Conference production possible.
COVID-19 Information Resources
Welcome!From Kyle Schaefer, KC9SDK, ARRL Wisconsin Section Emergency Coordinator.....
"Welcome to the Wisconsin ARES/RACES website. I am honored by the opportunity to lead this dedicated group of amateur radio volunteers. Please explore our web site, the means by which we tell our story of service to various public and private agencies and ultimately to our communities. Come back often."
Welcome to Our New SECWe now have a NEW SEC in Wisconsin ARES/RACES! Please welcome Kyle Schaefer, KC9SDK, to his new position in Wisconsin ARES/RACES.
And a thank you should also go out to Mark Rasmussen, N9MEA, For his service to our organization.
ARES ConnectAmateur Radio Emergency Service Transitioning to New Online Reporting System 02/20/2018 The Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES) will phase out the traditional ARES report forms later this year in favor of an online system called ARES Connect, a volunteer management, communications, and reporting system.
For more information on ARES Connect, go to the ARRL website.
NEW!!The Wisconsin ARES/RACES SE District is providing an opportunity for all licensed amateur radio operators to receive instruction for FEMA ICS courses 100, 700, 200, and 800. These courses are required for basic and advanced certification and credentialing for Wisconsin ARES/RACES.
Wisconsin ARES/RACES SE District Certification and Credentialing Opportunity
To see more information, click here! (PDF 42KB)
Meet the new leaders stepping up in Wisconsin ARES/RACES
Please welcome Nick Proulx, KC9YLK. His introduction is posted here!
Joshua Roskos, KC9WWH, has accepted the position of WC DEC. His letter of introduction is posted here.
Help Support WeComm
Here is a way for all of us to help support WeComm, who has been helping to support our role for many years.
If you use Amazon.com to make any of your on-line purchases, consider using Amazon Smile (http://goo.gl/qTnEfs) instead. It is the same old Amazon that you are used to except this link will allow .5% of your purchase to be donated back to WeComm. It doesn't cost you anything to use this. You can buy anything at Amazon Smile that you can purchase at the regular Amazon site. The link provided above will take you to an Amazon Smile login screen that is basically the same as the login for Amazon except that it automatically selects WeComm as the recipient of the donation.
Thanks to WeComm and I hope that the Amateur community can help out WeComm as much as they have helped us.
Do you have questions about location and frequencies of the equipment on the WeComm Network, take a look!
ARRL Public Service Communications Manual &
ARRL Amateur Radio Emergency Service Manual
Public Service Communications Manual: PDF - 590KB
ARRL ARES Manual (2015): PDF - 2.6MB
WI ARES/RACES Winlink Net
The WI ARES/RACES WinLink Net meets every Tuesday during the 24-hour window of 0000-2400, local time. Check ins accepted by sending a Winlink message with call, first name, city and county to net control operator Jim , KB9MMC. All check ins are acknowledged. This net lets stations do a weekly check on their sending and receiving capabilities, and a complete list of all check ins for the week are is to everyone who checks in on Wednesday.
A reminder of the net is sent each Monday morning. Short exercises or queries are sent about once a month with the reminder. Info bulletins or queries are sent anytime. All WinLink digital operators are welcome, there is no need to be a member of WI ARES/RACES.
SIMCOM Review from WI DMA
WI ARES/RACES gets a nice mention from the Deparment of Military afairs. Read the article here!
At this years conference we paid tribute to Don Michalski W9IXG and his leadership role in Wisconsin ARES/RACES. Don Michalski was our Section Manager from 1999 – 2015.
Don’s dedication and commitment to public service helped provide a strong foundation for Wisconsin ARES/RACES. That is why it was unanimous to permanently change the Wisconsin ARES/RACES Senior Leadership Award, to the Don Michalski Leadership Award.
We are honored that Don’s family could attend and present the award. Don might be gone but we know that his legacy and hard work will continue-on.
Thanks to Michael KB9VBR for recording this tribute. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SlfSGsX_dNg
Get to know Patrick Moretti, KA1RB
Section Manager (SM) WI
ARRL ARES/RACES E-Letter
To read the current issue or look at past issues, just follow the link: http://www.arrl.org/FandES/field/ares-el/
The Newest WI ARES/RACES Brochure
Are you a Traffic Handler?
We are adding lots of Tips and Resources for the Traffic People out there. Go to the menu and look under "Training" or you can click here!
Abbreviated Incident Action Plan
Skip Sharpe, W9REL, has forwarded a new version of the "Abbreviated Incident Action Plan" Please review here or by going to the vertical menu on the left under "Governing Docs". It is also available on the menu at the bottom of this page.