Former ARRL staffer Joel Hallas, W1ZR, is the winner of the 2015 Bill Orr, W6SAI, Technical Writing Award. Hallas was recognized for his March 2015 QST article, “Standing Wave Ratio — What Does It Really Mean?”
“I am surprised, pleased, and honored to receive this award and hope to continue to be able to contribute and give back to this wonderful hobby that has had such a big impact on my life,” said Hallas. “I started in ham radio at age 13, and it provided a focus for the rest of my life.”
The Bill Orr, W6SAI, Technical Writing Award is bestowed each year to the author who writes an outstanding QST article or series on new or existing technologies or on methods or means of amateur communication. Articles must be written in an easily understood style, worthy of the Bill Orr “stamp of approval,” and encourage interest and expand the knowledge and understanding of amateurs who may lack a strong technical background.
The QST editorial staff serves as the selection panel and recommends the winner from a review of the year’s QST articles to the ARRL Foundation Board for final approval at its Annual Meeting.
“Joel is one of those people who ‘retire,’ but just can’t stop working,” said ARRL Publications Manager and QST Editor Steve Ford, WB8IMY. “He may be one of the most prolific QST writers ever.”
Hallas, who lives in Westport, Connecticut, with his wife Nancy, W1NCY, holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in electrical engineering. He joined the ARRL Headquarters staff in 2003. By the time he retired as the Technical Editor of QST in 2013, he was responsible for the magazine’s technical content, the “Doctor is IN” and “Product Review” columns, as well as short articles for beginners. In addition to writing some 150 QST articles, he also is also the author of Basic Radio, Basic Antennas, The ARRL Guide to Antenna Tuners, Hamspeak, The Care and Feeding of Transmission Lines, Understanding and Using Your Antenna Analyzer, and The Radio Amateur’s Workshop — all published by ARRL.
“My experience as an Amateur Radio operator provided a practical basis for my education and helped me succeed, both as a student and as a practicing engineer,” Hallas said. The Bill Orr Award comprises an engraved plaque and $250, to be presented at an ARRL convention.
Established in 1973 by the ARRL, the ARRL Foundation is an independent IRS 501(c)(3) organization that administers programs to support the Amateur Radio community. The Foundation is funded entirely through the generosity of radio amateurs and friends. ARRL Foundation programs for Amateur Radio award scholarships for higher education, grants for Amateur Radio projects, and special Amateur Radio program grants for The Victor C. Clark Youth Incentive Program and The Jesse A. Bieberman Meritorious Membership Program.