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Open Response to Kermit Carlson from John Crovelli, W2GD

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Date: October 16, 2018

To: Kermit Carlson W9XA – Director and Candidate for Re-Election, ARRL Central Division

Cc: All Voting ARRL Members in the Central Division

From: John Crovelli W2GD – ARRL Life Member

Subject: Open Response to Your Comments on Censure of Dick Norton

Kermit, your baseless, uninformed accusations directed towards me, and your insistence on defending the unjustifiable actions of the ARRL Board¹ only serve to underscore the reasons new representation is needed in the Central Division.

You do yourself and your constituents no favors, Kermit, when you twist and omit facts and invent false truths to suit your selfish, misguided intentions and provide cover for the Board’s inexcusable course of action taken to silence the voice of Dick Norton², the duly-elected Director representing the ARRLs Southwest Division. I have addressed this separately in the form of a formal complaint filed with the ARRL Ethics and Elections Committee.

You bring the League into disrepute when you publicly apply the harshest possible punishment to a Director trying to do his job. We know your true intent was to expel Director Norton, not censure. Only the legal boundaries established by Connecticut statutes prevented you from proceeding to your ultimate goal.

But, the truth, Kermit, is that this is about much more than the small issue of censure. It’s about  the incalculable damage you and your Board co-conspirators have inflicted and continue to inflict on the League through the division and dysfunction created by your relentless pursuit of political dominance within the Board.

You accelerate the spiraling decline in membership by allowing a dispute that should have been resolved privately to bubble over into the public domain – giving Members every reason to doubt the ability of this Board to effectively lead the organization and do the job they were elected to do. You’ve done your part in creating the credibility crisis the Board finds itself in today.

You prevent the ARRL from acting on the strategic imperatives that face the organization and Amateur Radio as a whole by turning what should be serious collaboration into a political sideshow.  

You render the ARRL incapable of acting as Amateur Radio’s trusted advocate with the FCC by creating a climate of control and exclusion in the crafting of policy. The result of your efforts is weak policy finding legitimate opposition throughout the Amateur Radio community.

And, your waste of countless hours on suppression of necessary dialog and creative problem solving is a colossal misdirection of the precious resources of the League.

We don’t want to hear your petty lectures about censure (or your Johnny come lately faux thoughts on transparency) any more, Kermit. We don’t want to listen to your excuses for our Board being at a standstill and failing to move Amateur Radio and the purposes of the ARRL forward.

I, and the thousands of thoughtful and caring hams who support the values articulated by myARRLVoice, have a vision of an ARRL that truly leads – an ARRL that’s the pride of hams around the globe. And to achieve that vision, we need a Board composed of Enablers, Risk Takers, and Leaders willing to listen to each other and the community they serve.

This election is not about the small issue of a personality conflict within the Board. It’s about moving toward an ARRL leadership team that understands that the Membership must be treated as it’s trusted partner. This will only happen when the current trend is reversed and Members are accorded proper respect. We need a Board that will, through both its words and its actions, work to close the ever-widening gap in trust.

It’s time for voters in the Central Division to stand up for Valerie Hotzfeld, NV9L for ARRL Central Division Director – – the candidate who represents real change. To stand up for a new Member-oriented ARRL. To stand up for the principles of trust, transparency, fair play and inclusiveness, and to hold its leaders to a higher standard.

¹Kermit Carlson Campaign Website – October 12, 2018 –

²Norton Website – ARRL Board Political Disqualification, Code of Conduct, and Censure Activity – October 12, 2018 –

³John Crovelli W2GD – Formal complaint of electioneering violations by Kermit Carlson in Central Division –