Author: Brian Baldwin

I grew up in Baltimore, MD and left in 1986. I've lived and worked around the U.S. and settled in Arizona in 1997.  I got interested in radio while I was in high school. My best friend's step-father owned a 2-way radio shop and I eventually worked there selling and installing CBs, scanners, and commercial 2-way radios and radio-telephones. In 1978 I got my Amateur Radio and FCC General Class Radio Telephone license. When the shop closed I went to work for Wright's Radio in northern MD, then to the Motorola (MSS) shop in Baltimore. After project managing and installing a statewide O&M radio system for the C&P phone company (later Bell Atlantic), I was hired by the Motorola Radio, Telephone and Airline division as a FTR (Field Technical Rep). I left Motorola around 1981 to work for American Radio Telephone Service (ARTS) in Balto./wash. D.C. installing and maintaining paging systems, answering service cordboards and electronic answering systems and, the ultimate first non-wireline celluar sytem in the USA that went into commercial service in 1984. ARTS created and franchised Cellular One. I became the Technical Director for the paging division when the comapny split into two-divisions, and eventually Cellular One was sold to the Washington Post for $52 million in 1985 I think it was. I left ARTS and changed paging companies a few times. The last position was as the Director of Technical Operations for the Western Division (everything west of the Mississippi, AK & HI) of Arch Wireless. Our crown service was Nationwide paging on 152.840MHz. We simucasted 4-level FSK with 250 & 500 watt transmitters via satellite control. ARCH wasted 40 million on a fulfillment and billing system based on Bell Systems mainframes that never worked. My little development team took a PC based system that corporate abandoned and we made it work. We deveolped nationwide outage reporting systems, systems that billed the phone companies for handling their traffic, and several other breakthrough applications that made a lot of mony for the shareholders. It was a billion dollar industry. Arch sunk untold amounts of money into develpoment of a digitized voice paging system that nobody wanted Our 2-way paging was what everyone wanted. Unfortunately, cellular ate our lunch with that service, and Arch went bankrupt. I left telecom and Ham for about 22 years. I didn't even own a radio and let my ham license expire. In July of 2021 I got interested in GMRS, got a license and a couple of HTs. In August of 2021 I took the amateur radio test, got my ham license and old call sign back. Then I bought more radios and am just getting into DMR and APRS. Boy how things have changed! I have a lot of catching up to do. It's a good thing I am semi-retired! Learning all digial modes for HF has been a challenge.