Welcome Fellow Amateur Radio Enthusiasts:


Dear ARRL Central Division members:

Within the past three weeks you may have received a flyer from me either by mail or as a handout at the Wisconsin State Convention. That flyer contained several statements that I believed to be accurate but, as I have just been advised by ARRL’s Ethics and Elections Committee, are incorrect.  Please accept my apology for these inaccuracies and note the specific corrections below.  I encourage you to read them in detail so that you are not left with any misunderstanding.  Please also feel free to pass this message on to other members in our Division whom I may not have reached.

1) Original statement: “In the past three years your board of directors has removed Joe Ames W3JY as chairman of the NTS (National Traffic System).”

Corrected statement: In June of 2016 the Executive Committee (whose members are elected by the full board), on the recommendation of the Programs and Services Committee, removed Joe Ames W3JY from his positions as Eastern Pennsylvania Section Manager and as Eastern Area Chair of the National Traffic System.  The full board did not vote on this matter, and some directors were not aware of it until after the action had been taken.  Mr. Carlson was not a director at this time and, therefore, was not a voting member of the board.

2) Original statement: “In the past three years your board of directors has either disqualified, prevented from running or censured K4AC, K3RF, N6AA without the opportunity to appeal to the board.”

Corrected statement:

  • In September of 2016 the Ethics and Elections Committee (E&E) found Doug Rehman K4AC, the sitting Director of the Southeastern Division, ineligible to run for re-election. Mr. Rehman formally requested a hearing at which the full board would review the E&E decision to disqualify him, as is his right under the ARRL Bylaws. In a split decision, the board voted not to review the E&E decision, and no hearing was held. Carlson, who had acceded to the position of Director two months earlier following the retirement of Mr. Isely, voted not to review that decision and to ratify the disqualification.
  • In August of 2017 the E&E Committee notified sitting Atlantic Division Vice Director Bob Famiglio K3RF that they had rejected his petition to run for the Atlantic Division Director position due to “failure to disclose a conflict of interest”. Famiglio formally requested a hearing at which the full board would review the E&E decision to reject his nominating petition, as is his right under the ARRL Bylaws. There was no board meeting on the matter; directors were asked to convey their individual decisions to CEO Tom Gallagher NY2RF.  Mr Famiglio was later informed by General Counsel Christopher Imlay that that a majority of board did not wish to review the E&E decision, and no hearing was held.  The wishes of the individual directors as to reviewing the E&E decision was not reported in any published minutes, so there is no official record of Mr. Carlson’s position with respect to the requested review.   If you’re curious, you will have to ask him directly.  I understand that a tally of the Director’s positions was sent to the directors but that it was marked “confidential”.
  • The E&E Committee confirmed the accuracy of my original statement that Southwestern Division Director Dick Norton N6AA was censured by a vote of the full board. This occurred in November of 2017. Carlson introduced the censure motion and voted in favor of this action.

3) Original statement: “In the past three years your board of directors has approved a new board “Code of Conduct”.  After much dismay from the membership, the board voted to table this until this January.  So this now lies in wait for the new board . . . “

Corrected statement: In January of 2017 the board adopted a series of internal governance measures informally referred to as the “Code of Conduct” on a 12-to-3 vote.  Mr. Carlson seconded the motion and voted in favor of it.

Later that year, a significant number of ARRL members communicated their displeasure with the N6AA censure, which was directly tied to the Code of Conduct, and with certain provisions of the Code itself.  At the January, 2018 board meeting, Atlantic Division Director Tom Abernethy W3TOM moved to rescind the Code of Conduct.  Considerable discussion ensued, and an agreement was reached whereby Mr. Abernethy withdrew his motion and Mr. Carlson, with Mr. Abernethy seconding, introduced a motion to rescind one provision and suspend one section in the Code of Conduct and to require a complete review of the Code by the July 2018 Board meeting.  The motion passed.  The review had not been completed by the July 2018 board meeting.

It is possible that the fate of the Code of Conduct will be decided at the January 2019 board meeting by the returning directors and whoever is elected in the five Division races now underway.

4) Original statement: “Sadly, your current director has voted in favor of most of the above.”

Corrected statement: No replacement language is needed.  Mr. Carlson’s individual votes on items 2a, 2c and 3 above, as well as any involvement he may have had in moving or seconding the related motions, are now stated therein.

5) Original statement: “. . . yet the league sets negative membership goals (see 2017 annual report exhibit below).“

Corrected statement:  . . . yet the league had projected several years of negative changes in membership numbers (see 2017 annual report exhibit below).

6) Original statement: “Did you know that the majority of the current league board members have not actually been elected . . . “

Corrected statement: This statement is retracted completely.  It had been published in a national Amateur radio magazine, where I first saw it, but it is not correct.

Thank you for taking the time to read this corrective text and for your participation in this election.


The ARRL is at a critical point. The past few years, league members have expressed serious concerns over the following league and/or board actions: The National Traffic System issue, the revised Amateur Radio Parity Act (ARPA), the new Code of Conduct, the recent DQ’s of qualified candidates to run, the censure of one board member, and the selection process for the new CEO to name a few. I, too, share your concerns. I am hoping to make a change from the inside.  

I was licensed in 2006. I was very active in several local clubs as well as the Kenosha County ARES group. I was recently part of the Force of 50 that went to Puerto Rico after hurricane Maria. I enjoy DXing and contesting, but feel that all aspects of this hobby should be well represented. We’re all on the same team; our love of amateur radio.  I was honored this year as “Amateur of the Year” at Dayton’s Hamvention. I’m an ARRL Life and Maxim member because I know the value they bring to help protect and promote this incredible hobby. 

I’m the Controller for a large conglomerate of 16 companies with an annual revenue of $60,000,000 and 300+ employees. I’m 1 of 6 in upper senior management. I am very goal driven, organized, and take a logical approach in everything I do. My financial team is one of the most efficient and lean, as well as the happiest.  

I am excited about focusing on membership as I see the membership numbers on the decline. I want to make sure all newly licensed or inactive hams are more embraced into this hobby. I know that the success of a ham’s participation is a direct result of the local clubs and ARES groups, so I want to make sure local clubs thrive. 

Because the ARRL is a member driven organization, I believe the ARRL needs to be more transparent. If elected, I will keep the Central Division membership informed.  I will ask for member input on issues that can significantly impact on our hobby. 

I am excited about the possibility to make real change at the league and on the local level. Please check out My Mission and the About me page to learn more. Please vote for me this October and let’s make sure that the ARRL best represents its members and make the Central Division the best possible!

Valerie Hotzfeld ~ NV9L

You can find more detail on the “About me” and the “My mission” pages.