On 3/30/2021, I sent the following to the Salvation Army EDS:
Maj. Heaver et.al.
I would be happy to address all of your points. As I have done numerous times in the past. With no response.
However, I am not hopeful at this point that I will be receiving a positive response. I have tried numerous times to engage the committee on the ‘issues’ you mention and I have received zero response. I ask Ian, Major Tom, Bill Feist and Bob L to at least acknowledge receipt of this email.
- When I was asked to take over the management of the net, I attended at least two meetings with the committee and I explained, both verbally as well as an extensive email, what I planned to accomplish after taking over. Including:
- Bringing the member database/email list into the 20th century (groups.io) from a handwritten list with nothing but a callsign and a name. Where Ken Gilliland had to send 275 individual emails to alert the members of an activation, NCS shift opening or another request, it can be done with one button. And every committee member is instantly notified of any activity. Also, every committee member, through their own login to the system, has moderator privileges and can edit/delete any message they deem necessary.
- Instituting training on emergency message handling to our strongest stations and established relays.
- Establishing a modern statistical reporting methodology of net attendance and activities so TSA could use this data to improve the role of SATERN. I placed one month of data on a boilerplate website to demonstrate how it can be used. It is NOT part of any ‘official’ SATERN website. Nor IS there an ‘official’ SATERN website. SATERN.ORG is a privately hosted and maintained website with no official TSA control or oversight. Just the same as SATERN.info.
- Establishing a DMR net so that the hundreds of stations/potential TSA volunteers that have no access to the 20m net for whatever reason be able to participate in.
- Streamlining the check-in process using NetLogger, which is used by MANY SATERN nets throughout the country and has proven invaluable to all concerned. Between 50-70 people participate in it daily. I was doing this BEFORE becoming Net Manager and it helped Ken Gilliland out immensely as well for the last 3 months of his tenure.
All of the above was discussed and wholeheartedly endorsed by the committee and both Maj. Michele and Michelle B, before I assumed the position. I was never told I would have to gain any further approval before accomplishing that which I pledged BEFORE you appointed me, only that you all endorsed me to do it without question. Nor was I ever told by my predecessor that there was anything close to this level of oversight wrought upon the net. Ken and the committee had 3 months to tell me anything to the contrary; I have had to learn as I go since I took over.
Now, to address your concerns:
- Groups.io email reflector. I pay (and HAVE paid) $25/month for this service since it’s inception. Everyone on the committee has been granted full moderator access. If the committee or TSA wishes to reimburse me and take over fiduciary responsibility and management of this email reflector, I will gladly turn it over to you.
- ZOOM – Since asked to do so, (about a month ago), I no longer (at the committee’s insistence) ‘advertise, list or otherwise promote’ my zoom channel in NetLogger or on the email reflector. Anyone who chooses to join my private channel does so through means OTHER than TSA. I have included a disclaimer for first time joiners explaining that my ZOOM channel has NOTHING whatsoever to do with SATERN or TSA.
- I have removed any reference to TSA from the SATERN.info website. Over a month ago. The word SATERN is not a Trademark or a Patent, just the logo (which, by the way, is a logo I never used on any of my private sites, nor is it used by any other ‘international net’ OR the ‘official SATERN website’.
- Cancellation of the net on 3/27/2021. I sent an email to the entire committee, including the liaison, before I cancelled the net. Having been heavily involved in the SATERN net for 2.5 years, I have never been told, or was aware, that any further approval or notification was necessary. If we had continued trying to hold the net that day, we would have been in CLEAR violation of Federal LAW, as per the FCC, regarding interference with established frequency usage. We, as Ham Radio Operators, answer to the FCC BEFORE AND EXCLUSIVE of, the Committee OR TSA.
- The Hamshack Hotline Bridge has no affiliation whatsoever with TSA. The word ‘SATERN’ is not a trademark or patent, only a no longer used logo (see U.S. Trademark & Patent office registration #75281064) which I have NEVER used in all my endeavors. I have never stated that the Hotline Net Bridge is affiliated with, or sponsored, or endorsed by, The Salvation Army. When I made the initial announcement of the Bridge, I stated that as well. (For the record: It is already being used by several SATERN nets in the country. Was it approved by the committee?)
Changes in the operation of the SATERN 20m net – This has NEVER been a requirement before I took it over. It is not currently a requirement for any other SATERN International net. I know that for a FACT. I also know that if you try to ‘control’ those nets like you are trying to control the 20m net, the manager of THOSE net will resign. And take with them the ‘official’ SATERN Website as well as the ALM Division 40m net. There are other SATERN international nets that operate EACH WEEK without ANY oversight from the committee who use a private chat channel, ZOOM meetings and change their modes regularly using new technologies.
As Emergency Service Workers on the level of the committee, anyone who is ‘boots on the ground’, such as Bob L and Major Tom, and Bill Feist, fully understand that Auxilliary Communication Groups such as SATERN must be, by definition, adaptable to changing conditions as seen fit. If I, as Net Manager of a supposed Emergency Communication Support Group, need to wait 6 months for a series of meetings, approvals or endorsements before doing ANYTHING new, I cannot, nor can ANYONE, do the job you placed me in.
Which brings me to my summation:
WHY is the 20m net being singled out for accomplishing what the COMMITTEE, LIASON and EDS MANAGER ALL endorsed? Because we have accomplished the most? Because we are ‘squeaky’ in that I actually TRIED to open lines of communication between the Net and the Committee that did not exist before? Ken AG6SV ran the SATERN net without ANY ‘permission’ from the committee or the liaison before I took it over. Efficiently. Without question. In fact, you gave him a nice plaque for his retirement.
I was approached to be the MANAGER of this net. I spend over 25 hours per week managing it. I am more than willing to report ANY AND ALL of our operations to the committee and the liaison and the EDS directors, and whomever else you feel I should report my activities to.
The committee made it CLEAR that ALL my designated Net Controls needed to be credentialed. I asked them to take the trainings, spend their personal time learning about Safe & Well and going through the motions to fulfil TSA’s desire. MORE than I can say for the other SATERN nets. And they DID. THREE MONTHS AGO. Then, when they tried to attain ‘CREDENTIALING’, they hit a stone wall with HQ.
NOTHING I have done, proposed, or implemented has been hurtful to TSA or SATERN. It has been done with the sole intention of fulfilling the promises & proposals I made BEFORE being appointed to my position. The Net has grown, prospered, improved, and become an actual USEFUL entity in a bare 4 months. To the point where, when the Storm Season starts (real soon) I feel we are TRULY READY to support TSA HQ, ANY Territory, ANY Division, ANY branch of TSA EDS. OR the Red Cross. OR ARES. OR Homeland Security. OR the sole Ham Radio Operator, crying out for help in a Hurricane-Stricken zone with no means of assistance but SATERN. I am darn proud of what our VOLUNTEERS have accomplished in such a short time.
I find myself in a quandary. Part of me wants to just walk away from this altogether, part of me wants to fight for the sake of the hundreds of VOLUNTEERS who want nothing more than to SUPPORT TSA in their mission. No one person is un-expendable, and I have no doubt that, should I walk away, there will be someone to take it over and keep it alive. Or perhaps not. But from all I have seen in the last 2 months, between the back-room committee meetings that I am not made privy to, the mass of emails that I am not included in, and the regular reports that I receive from people ‘in the know’ about the backstabbing and insulting things that have been said about me over the last 2 months, (Yes, it ALL gets back to me.) it seems the Committee wants me gone. If that is the case, at least have enough respect for my 30-years of professional education and effort to be blunt with me and let me know forthright.
To Maj. Michele in particular: I apologize that you have found me ‘difficult to deal with’ based on my efforts to defend my positions during all of this. I do not, nor have I ever, taken the position of SATERN net Manager lightly. Although I worked ‘without a net’ (no pun intended) from the beginning by following Ken Gilliland’s lead, I made it my priority to learn how TSA works and what you expect. I am doing the best I can given no prior instructions and conflicting directions. Bottom line here is: If you want me out, just say the word. If you want our 20m Net to be run efficiently and continue to accomplish that which you ASKED me to accomplish, then say so. PLEASE. We are supposed to be communicators. With a common goal. Please do not call me on the carpet for instituting changes based on the ignorance of the technologies I use, because there are many SATERN people who completely understand and use this technology on a daily basis. A lack of understanding, and thereby opposition, is going to keep TSA and SATERN in the middle ages with no room for growth or expansion.
Either way, this will be the last ‘manifesto’ you receive from me on this matter, as this is the third email I have written & gotten no response to from committee members. I have had conversations with Ian Anderson, Bill Feist, Major Tom and Ken Standard ex-parte and they all have seemed to be onboard with what I have been doing. If I am mistaken, please let me know.
If that is the case, where exactly is the committee having a problem with what I am doing? I beg you to explain this to me. I understand liability. I understand Credentialling & background checks. I understand & endorse the chain of command. Seriously, why are you focusing on me?????? No one seems to be able to answer that.
If you all pride yourselves on the Christian Values of Benevolence, Forgiveness, Truism & Honesty, why, after at LEAST 4 massive emails explaining myself, are we still at this impasse???
I IMPLORE you to give me an answer, unless this is all a sham & your ultimate goal is to make me & the other dedicated volunteers of SATERN go away. I have no stomach for TSA Politics, Power Plays, EGO’s and associated nonsense that does NOT belong in Life-Saving communication efforts.
I look VERY MUCH forward to a reply, although based on prior performance, I do not expect one. Because, and I hate to say this, as designated ‘communicators’, you leave much to be desired.
Regardless of your wishes, I am including the faithful, dedicated and FULLY TRAINED NET CONTROL VOLUNTEERS of SATERN in this response. They deserve to know what is going on. Sorry if you feel they should be kept out of the loop. But THEY are the ones who give of their time, their effort, their heart and soul, six days a week, to support The Salvation Army. From all walks of life, all Faiths, Denominations and Sectarianisms. The Supreme Being of our Universe does not, so I have been made to believe, discriminate based on those who serve Him, but welcomes all. Am I wrong?
If I am incorrect, then please, accept my immediate resignation from the position of SATERN 20M International Net Manager. I hope you have someone lined up & capable to take over the position, amidst the unnecessary micro-management & scrutiny. I will gladly provide them with exactly what I received from TSA and Ken, when I took over the net, & shut down everything I host related to SATERN. There are MANY Volunteer groups out there that would wholeheartedly welcome my/our participation without question.
There you go. I beat your deadline by 16 out of 17 days.
Dedicated VOLUNTEER of TSA & the SATERN Mission.
Today I received a response:
In December 2020, The National SATERN Committee offered you the position of International SATERN 20M SSB Net Manager. You officially took leadership of the position on December 15, 2020 when Ken Gilliland retired. Since that time, a number of issues have developed between yourself and the National SATERN Committee. On March 31, 2021 you offered your resignation effective immediately from your position as the International SATERN 20M SSB Net Manager. Upon receiving your offer of resignation, I have been working with the Committee and NHQ to develop a plan to operate the net moving forward.
At this time I am reaching out to you to inform you that The National SATERN Committee will accept your offer of resignation effective immediately. I will work with the Committee Members to coordinate the ongoing management of the SATERN Net team.
We thank you for your work as net manager and we encourage you to continue as a Salvation Army volunteer in the Southern Territory.
Major Michele Heaver
Divisional Disaster Services Secretary
National SATERN Liaison to NHQ
2445 Prior Ave North
Roseville, MN 55113
So, that is where we stand. From this point forward, I will no longer be participating in any SALVATION ARMY activity. However, for now, I will continue to manage the daily SATERN Net. The name SATERN is trademarked by NASA. NOT TSA. The net from this point on will be the SATERN 20m International SSB net. Acronym to be changed. I will be distributing a new NCS script and Preamble to anyone who wishes to remain a part of this Net.
I invite any of you to comment below. Or contact me directly.
WA5LEE - Lee Glassman.