ARRL Board Bylaws Revision - Code of Conduct - Election and Ethics Committee

Revision of the ARRL Bylaws Article 46 is an agenda item being considered by the Board of Directors. At the time of this posting, the topic will be next considered at the scheduled Board of Directors Meeting on January 19-20, 2024.

Southwestern Division Director Richard Norton, N6AA, has been informed by the Election and Ethics (E&E) Committee that he is the subject of formal complaints which they would like to act on prior to the scheduled January meeting. Considering the secretive and biased procedures used by the Board and E&E Committee in the past (despite obvious condemnation of those techniques by the general ARRL membership), Director Norton is publishing details of the current complaint in the desire for openness and transparency.
Director Norton release on January 12, 2024

From: Richard Norton

The following is approved for public release -

Dear ARRL Member,

It is with a sense of profound disappointment that I find it necessary to share some of the background and details of recent action of the ARRL's Ethics and Elections Committee, and its apparent use in a scheme to attempt to deprive ARRL members of their ability to choose their representative on the ARRL Board with proposed changes to Bylaw 46.

When I received the following unfounded claim made by ARRL Pacific Division Director McIntyre and learned that E&E Committee members even considered acting on it, I was so stunned and outraged that I was at a loss of how to respond.

[INSERT] Communication from Acting E&E Committee Chairman Jeff Ryan, KØRM

On December 21, 2023 at 08:45:20 AM PST, Ryan, Jeff, KØRM (Dir, RM) wrote:

Mr. Norton:

The Ethics & Elections (E&E) Committee has received a complaint about you filed by Ms. McIntyre. As chair of the E&E Committee she has recused herself. She reached out to me as a member of the E&E committee and verbally explained her recollection of an interaction with you. I asked her if she wanted to file a complaint and she said "yes". I requested she send that information to me in an email. After receiving her complaint I contacted Mr. Roderick and advised him that I was in receipt of a complaint from Ms. McIntyre and that she has recused herself from the Committee. I did not provide any details about the nature of the complaint nor the parties involved (except, of course, Ms. McIntyre). Mr. Roderick named me as temporary acting chair of the E&E Committee for the purposes of looking into this incident.

According to Ms. McIntyre:

You approached her on November 18th, 2023 after the A&F Committee meeting at ARRL HQ in Newington Connecticut. Vice Director Marcin was present and you requested he excuse himself so you could have a private conversation with Ms. McIntyre. As that conversation progressed you appeared to be agitated and implied that she had not complied with a previous action you expected her to take. As the conversation was concluding, you approached her in a physically threatening manner and verbally threatened her that you would be embarrassing her at the January board meeting.

Ms. McIntyre advised the E&E committee members that she felt very uncomfortable with this interaction and felt physically and verbally threatened.

The purpose of this email is to:

1. Inform you that Ms. McIntyre has filed a complaint with the ARRL E&E Committee
2. Allow you an opportunity to respond in writing to the E&E Committee (Director Luetzelschwab and me)

Please respond via email no later than January 5th, 2024 directly to me ( and copy Director Luetzelschwab ( with any comments you wish to make with respect to your conversation of 11/18/2023 with Ms. McIntyre or this email. With or without a response from you, the Committee expects to conclude its inquiry prior to the January 2024 ARRL board meeting; however, if you believe you need more time to respond, please let me know.

Jeff Ryan, KØRM
Acting Chair
ARRL Ethics & Elections Committee

Norton response to Ryan email

Re: E&E Complaint - 11/18/2023 conversation with Ms. McIntyre

Mr. Ryan,

The accusations made by K6WX in your communication with me [above] are outrageously false.

I have had interactions with thousands of Radio Amateurs over the years. No one involved in Amateur Radio, or any other endeavor, has ever reported even a single case where I have physically threatened anyone.

Do you really suggest that an octogenarian, with a heart operation scheduled in little over a week, would risk his life by physically threatening someone 20-30 years younger, who clearly outweighed him?

[Bad news for some - The operation was a success.]

Additionally, at the end of the meeting, I was experiencing a bad episode of arrhythmia and was extremely weak. I had difficulty standing up. I couldn't go to dinner with any group or individual. While exiting the ARRL building, I even had to stop and rest before going out the front door. When I checked into the hotel, I needed to have the desk clerk bring my luggage in as I was too weak. The clerk would likely be able to verify this if needed.

,,, and then, there is the outrageous claim about "being advanced on," and being threatened physically!

The conversation with K6WX was held in the large meeting room where the A&F meeting had just concluded. There were people in the other half of the room. There were people in the hall outside and people in the offices across the hall. How many of them reported hearing a cry for help?

I also find it extremely hard to believe I threatened something "embarrassing." It's not in my M.O. However, Director McIntyre should feel embarrassed about the way the original "investigation" has been handled..

K6WX was Ethics and Elections Committee chair and handled an oral complaint against me (with no written record of its nature) by David Minster, who claimed I "leaked" a component of the League money he had spent on an irresponsible attempt to remove a sitting Director. K6WX admitted in writing to being "biased" in Mr. Minster's favor, but continued to direct the "investigation." K6WX went on an overseas trip to PJ4G with Minster, returned with a "verdict" essentially favorable to Minster, and kept it a secret from me as well as the Board.

Both the Minster and McIntyre "complaints" come from one-on-one meetings, with no witnesses.

I will put my record of honesty and fairness up against anyone's, and plenty of Radio Amateurs will back me up.

I repeat, the complaint is utterly false and outrageous.

Dick Norton, N6AA

[Norton continues]

Interestingly enough, during the period before my response was submitted, information came that revealed that the other two members of the Elections and Ethics Committee, Directors Ryan and Luetzelschwab, had already accepted the scurrilous claims as being fact and were broadcasting defamatory statements to League members.

The following language has been used by the members of the E&E Committee in communication with membership:

Rocky Mountain Division Director Ryan, KØRM: "In today's political climate, it has become 'OK' to 'lower oneself' to include name-calling, personal attacks that question an individual's competence, heritage, and/or motives; and to generally have emotional distrust or contempt for an individual with whom you disagree. It is my intention to ensure such behavior is not present in the ARRL Board room-because our members deserve representatives that always act in a manner that is consistent with the highest business and ethical standards as would any corporation-non-profit or otherwise. I'm perfectly OK with dissent; I'm not so fond of disrespect. I have been in the minority on votes in the ARRL board room. It goes with the territory. What is not proper is to act like a spoiled four-year old who didn't get his way."

Central Division Director Luetzelschwab, K9LA: [W]hen a Board member calls someone on the HQ staff a derogatory name, when a Board member verbally threatens another Board member, when a Board member advances on another Board member in a physical manner," etc. [T]hat's what this is about."

Both Directors Ryan and Luetzelschwab have been requested to provide specifics of their charges made to the League membership, and neither has done so. The bizarre and unique comment from Director Luetzelschwab about "advances on another Board member in a physical manner" should leave no doubt about his source.

Regarding Proposed Changes to Bylaw 46 -

The real reasons behind the proposed changes appears to be that some Board members and management want to hide bad decisions and the resulting impacts from the membership, and that they want more excuses to remove a Director from office..

For example, Mr. Minster has expressed that League financial information, especially that which he may find embarrassing, can be self-declared as being "confidential," and that Directors who discuss it with their constituencies should be removed from the Board.

Mr. Minster's supporters on the Board are attempting to grant Minster the ability to do just that, in spite of Connecticut law not permitting it.

The Ethics and Elections Committee plays an outsized role in such activities. Does the League benefit from efforts like this, obviously aimed at Director elimination? After reading this, do you think the procedures followed in this example reach reasonable quasi-judicial standards? Is this what you want more of from your Board? If the proposed changes to Bylaw 46 are passed, this is what your Board will be up to.

This single example, among many, of abuse of the League's E&E Committee system by three politically connected actors should by itself give reason not to encourage and validate ARRL Board secrecy.

I believe the ARRL members are the owners of the ARRL. I believe they are entitled to knowledge of how their assets are managed, and how their representatives vote.

There is no dispute about not releasing lobbying or litigation strategies. Almost all disagreements about disclosure to members involve what is being done with their money or how Directors voted on issues before them..

There is essentially nothing I do or have done as a League Director that should be kept from the membership.

I encourage any and all members who agree with me to express their opinions to all the League Directors and Officers.

I strongly oppose Board secrecy and the ARRL Motion to change Bylaw 46.


Dick Norton, N6AA