Highland Amateur Radio Association
More than 80 amateur radio operators and guests traveled to Hillsboro this week to attend the Highland Amateur Radio Association’s 45th Annual Christmas Dinner, Member Recognitions and Elections held at Hillsboro Methodist Church.
After a delicious meal served by Avery Elliott of the Frog and Club, HARA Information Officer John Levo introduced the speakers for the evening. Director of the Ohio Chapter of the American Radio Relay League, Scott Yonally, gave the opening address, in which he congratulated the club for being one of the best amateur radio clubs in the Ohio.
He said there were about 120 known clubs in Ohio and HARA was in the top 10%. He noted that the club’s involvement and service in the community is causing renewed interest in the service, people getting licensed and joining the club. He also noted that HARA’s membership is approaching 150, which is unusual for a rural community not close to a metropolitan area. Yonally went on to detail the benefits a hobbyist can receive through membership in the US National Radio Relay League.
Following Yonally’s comments, ARRL Great Lakes Deputy Manager Tom Delaney echoed Yonally’s praise for the club.
“HARA must have some kind of magic dust because you’re active and doing everything right,” Delaney said. “Therefore, people want to be associated with you, which is why you have grown and prospered,” he concluded.
In addition to recognizing individual members for their contributions to club activities and events during the year, a number of “Friends of HARA” received certificates of appreciation for their support of the organization. They were: Dave Bushelman, Highland County EMA Director, The Highland County Press, Avery Elliott, Mark and Missy Spradlin, Tom Delaney, Scott Yonally, Portsmouth Radio Club, Grant Amateur Radio Club and Clinton County Amateur Radio Association.
Highland ARA Network Manager Pat Hagen presented outgoing Network Manager Teddy Ruble with a plaque expressing the club’s appreciation for his many years as Network Manager.
Election results were announced with Jeff Collins to serve as President for 2020. Pat Hagen was elected Vice-President and Kathy Levo will return as Secretary-Treasurer. Richie Hagen will join Patrick Gilfillen and Steve Lamb as directors. 2019 Acting President Randy McNeil will become a director. Buddy Holcomb was recognized for his service to the club during his tenure as director.
President-elect Collins reminded everyone of the need for help on Saturday afternoon at the fairgrounds to help with communications and line up floats and other units for the annual Hillsboro Holiday Parade. He commented that it is HARA’s oldest local amateur radio community service project and even goes on to found the association. He also announced that HARA will offer a class leading to an amateur radio license in early 2020. An introduction is scheduled for January 19 with instruction effective from February 9. More information can be obtained by contacting HARA’s Chief Information Officer, John Levo, 937-393-4951 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The evening ended with an exchange of gifts, a draw and the presentation of door prizes. A special design for antenna books donated by the ARRL was made for the newly licensed hams.