The ICQ Podcast has announced a partnership to establish an annual “Homebrew Heroes Award” to recognize individuals, groups, or organizations that help to define the frontiers in Amateur Radio technology by building their own equipment. The new awards program is independent of the ICQ Podcast, but three podcast members comprise the Steering Committee — Frank Howell, K4FMH; Martin Butler, M1MRB/W9ICQ, and Colin Butler, M6BOY. The ICQ Podcast is a promotional partner in this endeavor, and Howell maintains the award website.
“We felt that with all of the technical homebrew activity in Amateur Radio today, that there should be a means by which to identify and highlight those whose technical creativity has made a clear impact on the hobby,” Howell said. Martin Butler observed the trio’s recent visit to Dayton Hamvention convinced them that homebrewing is alive and well.
Seeing this, Martin’s son, Colin, added, “My background in strategic marketing and information technology led me to believe that the time was right for such an award.”
Jeremy Kolonay, KF7IJZ, co-host of Ham Radio Workbench podcast, expressed enthusiasm for the new award. “It’s really important to have a way to recognize and promote excellence achieved by the most successful participants,” he said.
Howell said corporate sponsors have begun to sign on to donate prizes for future award recipients. The list includes Digilent, which told the award committee that it would contribute an Analog Discovery 2 test device, and Howell said he anticipates that the donor list will grow as more become aware of the new award.
There is no application for the award. The Steering Committee will recognize Homebrew Heroes Award candidates in the broad area of electronic homebrew design and construction “based upon the impact they have made in Amateur Radio,” the award website says. The Steering Committee will accept suggestions, however, and will evaluate these for referral to an anonymous Selection Committee.
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