Jim Tiemstra K6JAT

December 2019​

Jim Tiemstra obtained his first Amateur Radio license, WN9ELU, in Chicago in 1970. Since then Jim has held General, Advanced and Extra Class (20 wpm) licenses and the callsigns: WB9ELU, N6OIK, K6JAT, V26JAT and 3D2TJ, as well as having operated as PJ2/K6JAT and KH6/K6JAT, and from V26DX, KH6RS and KH6KR.

At Lyons Township High School in La Grange, Illinois, Jim eventually became the president of the Radio Club which held the callsign of W9SW and was equipped largely with World War II surplus radio equipment. Jim built his own gear mostly from Heathkits. In 1977, Jim married his wife, Lilah Greene, KE6EHD, and they moved to California. (They have twin sons, Robert and Matthew, KI6IHP, born in 1994.)

While Jim's favorite Ham Radio pastimes are contesting, DXing (he has confirmed the "easy" 300 plus) and DXpeditions, he has long been involved in the public service aspects of the hobby. As a member of the Oakland ARES group, Jim responded to the Loma Prieta Earthquake (1989) and Oakland Hills Firestorm (1991) disasters. Subsequently, the group successfully championed a proposal to use post-firestorm, bond Measure I funds to acquire and install amateur radio equipment in the City's Emergency Operations Center (EOC) and each of its 30 firestations dubbed the Emergency Communication Ham Operation (ECHO) system. He worked with the group to gain RACES recognition, wrote the RACES Operations Manual and was instrumental in forging a formal Letter of Understanding (LOU) with the City of Oakland.

In 1998, Jim incorporated the Oakland Radio Communication Association (ORCA), an ARRL affiliated club, was a founding director and became its first president. He currently is the trustee of the club's callsign: WW6OR. Jim acted as Oakland's RACES Radio Officer for over 14 years, served on the mayor's Emergency Management Council and was the Section Emergency Coordinator (SEC) of the ARRL's East Bay Section.

Jim is a Life Member of the ARRL, and served as Vice Director of the ARRL's Pacific Division from 2009 through 2017, during which time he served on the Administration and Finance, and Programs and Services Committees of the Board. He also serves on the League’s Public Service Enhancement Working Group which finalized the new ARES Plan in 2018 after three years of effort. On January 20, 2018, he became the Division's Director. At present, he serves on the League's Executive Committee, Chairs the Legislative Advocacy Committee and is on the Amateur Radio Legal Defense and Assistance Committee along with other assignments.

Most days, Jim can be found anywhere from DC to light from his shack, mobile or as DX. Jim retired as a Federal practitioner in the private practice of law in 2018.

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