Now completing her third term, ARRL President Kay Craigie, N3KN, will be handing off the baton this week. The ARRL Board of Directors will elect her successor when it meets January 15-16. President Craigie said it was her privilege to serve during the ARRL Centennial in 2014 and to help usher in Amateur Radio’s second century.
“The operating events, the convention, the whole year!” she said. “To be ARRL President during this celebration was my great good luck, and I’ll never forget all the members who told me how much they appreciate what the ARRL does for them and Amateur Radio.”
President Craigie was first elected as a volunteer League official in 1986, when she became the ARRL Eastern Pennsylvania Section Manager. The ARRL Board of Directors chose her as the League’s 15th president in January 2010.
President Craigie said she also was proud to represent the ARRL at international conferences and events during her time at the League’s helm. “As President I represented the ARRL at the Radio Society of Great Britain’s 100th anniversary observance, led the ARRL delegation at two International Amateur Radio Union (IARU) Region 2 conferences, and was part of ARRL teams at Friedrichshafen and Tokyo,” she said.
She also attended part of World Radiocommunication Conference 2012 as an observer. “For years, I have heard about the work done by IARU volunteers and the hams serving on their national delegations at the WRCs,” she said, “but until I saw their efforts firsthand, I really didn’t comprehend exactly how hard and how well they work together to protect and advance Amateur Radio for the rest of us.”
President Craigie said she was happy to sign the first formal agreement between the ARRL and the Boy Scouts of America. “One of my best friends in Amateur Radio got his start as a Scout,” she noted, adding that she hopes the agreement will lead to welcoming “even more talented young people into our ranks.”
During her tenure as the League’s President, she also has been deeply involved in efforts to achieve “reasonable accommodation” for all US hams, regardless zoning and land-use regulation, and especially the current Amateur Radio Parity Act campaign, which now has attracted 116 cosponsors in the US House and three in the US Senate. “We are today in a much better position than we’ve ever been before,” President Craigie said, “and I am certain that the ARRL’s leadership and membership will continue to press this essential issue until the job is done.”
President Craigie said she finds Amateur Radio still relevant, even in an era when technology seems to be advancing at lightning speed. “University students in scientific and technical programs get the point of Amateur Radio and see how it fits with their career plans and their talents,” she said, adding that she has see this firsthand in her community of Blacksburg, Virginia, the home of Virginia Tech. “Very bright students are not just getting licensed but are getting active.”
“These are the young people who will drive Amateur Radio technology into the future, and their energy and intelligence make me absolutely reject the idea that Amateur Radio is irrelevant and on its way out,” the ARRL President said.