Arizona Congresswoman Debbie Lesko has reintroduced a resolution with bipartisan support to designate April 18, 2022, as National Amateur Radio Operators Day. Introduced on April 19, the measure recognizes the important contributions amateur radio operators have made. She introduced a similar bill in the last Congress.
“Throughout history, amateur radio operators have provided invaluable services to our communities,” Lesko said in a news release. “I am proud to reintroduce this resolution to honor the important contributions amateur radio operators have made in Arizona and across our nation. Amateur radio has brought people together and has provided critical emergency communications during natural disasters. Amateur radio is a vital part of our nation’s communications infrastructure.”
Lesko said she was initially approached to introduce the resolution during the last Congress by then-12-year-old Raymond Anderson, N7KCB, of Peoria, Arizona.
As Lesko’s resolution notes, the International Amateur Radio Union (IARU) designates each April 18 as World Amateur Radio Day, to recognize the founding of the IARU in 1925. She said her resolution would recognize the amateur radio community with a national day in the US. The resolution cites the Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES®) for providing “invaluable emergency communications services following recent natural disasters, including, but not limited to, helping coordinate disaster relief efforts following Hurricanes Katrina, Wilma, and Maria and other extreme weather disasters.”
ARRL President Rick Roderick, K5UR, praised the initiative. “The voluntary contributions of America’s approximately 774,000 amateur radio operators in support of the critical communications infrastructure of the United States are rarely recognized,” Roderick said. “Congresswoman Lesko’s resolution is an important first step in correcting that oversight. On behalf of ARRL’s members and all amateur radio operators, I commend Congresswoman Lesko for her support of amateur radio and her leadership in bringing deserved recognition of the 106+ years of amateur radio’s substantial influence on the development of modern communications.”
Lesko was joined by members of both parties as original cosponsors of the resolution. The list includes Representatives Robert Aderholt of Alabama; Julia Brownley of California; Kat Cammack of Florida; Paul Gosar of Arizona; Glenn Grothman, of Wisconsin; Vicky Hartzler of Missouri; Ashley Hinson of Iowa; Chris Jacobs of New York; Kaiali’i Kahele of Hawaii; Mike Kelly of Pennsylvania; Doug LaMalfa of California, and Daniel Webster of Florida.