My name is Frank M. Howell, a licensed amateur radio operator located in Ridgeland, MS near Jackson. My FCC call sign is K4FMH (formerly KJ4QJZ) and I am registered on QRZ.com. I have been an SWL for 50 years now, focusing on AM BCB dxing, international SW broadcast, and some utility work (including the infamous “numbers” stations).
As a college professor who chased grant funds to support my research program, I just never felt I had time to stop and learn the Morse Code. I could have but I just didn’t. When the FCC dropped the code requirement, I began to make plans to get my ticket. But it was only after I retired after 30 years of “professing” that I took a boot camp course at Georgia Tech (thanks Andrew KI4SSU) and got the Technician license. A month later, I got my General. That was in December 2009 so I’m now working on the Extra Class material so as to gain that extra RF real estate in the near future. After retiring from MSU in 2008, I joined the Board of Regents Staff in Atlanta and lived in Buford, a town about an hour north of Atlanta near the Mall of Georgia. In late 2010, I resigned from the Board Staff and returned to our large home in Starkville. That sold within the year and we moved to Ridgeland, MS and built a retirement home on the Reservoir there.
My equipment consists of a Kenwood TS-940S, a Flex 3000, a Drake TR-7, a Swan 500CX, and a Yaesu FT-857D. I have two linear amplifiers, both made by Ameritron: ALS-600 for my home operation and the ALS-500M for portable operations with the FT-857D. For 2M/70CM, I have a Kenwood G707A, a Wouxun HT, and an FT-1500M for my go-bag. Antennas include an 80M horizontal loop hidden under the edge of the roof shingles, a Ventenna for 2M/70cm, and an MFJ 80M/40M dipole in the attic.