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The 2016 CQ-WE Contest

Held the weekend of November 12-13  —  57 years of friendly competition!

CQ-WE stands for CQ - Western Electric, the company whose ham employees originated the contest. The annual CQ-WE Contest is open to all Radio Amateurs. The objective is to contact as many Bell System Radio Amateurs as possible via ham radio. A Bell System amateur is any ham who is a current or former employee of any part of the pre-divestiture Bell System — that is, any company that was spun off from or shares a part of its heritage with the original AT&T Corporation. Examples include the current-day AT&T, Bell Labs, Western Electric, the Baby Bells, Bellcore, NCR, Alcatel-Lucent, Avaya, Agere, as well as other companies that have sprung from them. Normally held the second full weekend in November, the contest combines a spirit of competitive contesting with the chance to relax, have fun, and renew acquaintances with old friends and colleagues while fostering friendships with new ones.

AN UPDATE ON Scores and Prizes:  By now, all submitted logs should be in the hands of our National Coordinator, who is in the process of cross-checking and certifying them as you read this. We hope to post the final results within the next month. Here is a list of individuals from whom we have received logs. If you submitted a log and do not find yourself on the list below, please get in contact with us as soon as possible:

  1. AC4PQ
  2. AI4GR
  3. AK9U
  4. K0SFV
  5. K1GVQ
  6. K2AL
  7. K2AQM
  8. K2MUN
  9. K2QXW
  10. K2WJ
  11. K3TW
  12. K4CC
  13. K5IX
  14. K8LJ
  15. K8ON
  16. K9DH
  17. KB0JIT
  18. KB4LWT
  19. KB8RY
  20. KC2DWI
  21. KD2GIY
  22. KD8ZG
  23. N2FYE
  24. N2MS
  25. N4DE
  26. N5KGN
  27. N6TP
  28. N8XI
  29. N9AGW
  30. N9CX
  1. N9XU
  2. W0NFL
  3. W1GD
  4. W1RQ
  5. W2CQH
  6. W2DAD
  7. W2DAR
  8. W2FMB
  9. W2JEK
  10. W2JLK
  11. W2MN
  12. W2VE
  13. W3CRZ
  14. W4BXI
  15. W8KRS
  16. W8REW
  17. W9NJM
  18. WA1TDA
  19. WA4PTZ
  20. WA5MLF
  21. WA9TCD
  22. WB2UYN
  • W2EQ
  • WA2UBK
  • K4OCE
  • KD8WK
  • KD2KW
  • NJ5O
  • K8KJ
  • WA8MWA

As previously announced, one lucky participant will win a dual-band hand-held as a prize for taking part in the contest. The intent of the prize was to encourage participation, so the prize winner will be selected randomly, independent of any scores achieved in the contest. Anyone who qualifies for a CQ-WE Certificate of Participation (which basically amounts to anyone who has submitted a log containing at least five valid contacts) is eligible to win the prize. These contesters are shown with a number beside their callsigns above. If your call is not numbered, either you made less than five valid contacts or you are a member of the CQ-WE Committee, all of whom have removed themselves from the drawing.

To ensure a fair and open drawing, the committee has agreed on the following method for selecting a winner: On a date to be determined and announced well in advance, we'll use the Wisconsin MegaMillions lottery drawing to determine our grand prize winner. The first ball drawn, excluding the Mega and Megaplier balls, that matches the number associated with one of the contestants above will determine the winner of the hand-held. In the unlikely event that no winner is produced, suceeding MegaMillions drawings will determine the winner. The balls drawn, and the order in which they were drawn, may be reviewed after the fact here.

CONTEST HOST: The role of Contest Host is an important one, and we appreciate the time and effort the various locations have put into designing and distributing their certificates in years past. Last year the QV location – Southwestern Bell – was featured, thanks to Bob Rosier, K4OCE, who agreed to take the lead on this effort. This year we will be highlighting a different location, and it could be yours: The most difficult part is designing the certificates. (Honest!) If you'd like to add your work location to the annals of CQ-WE history, contact a member of the Contest Committee today.

CQ-WE #57 takes place, garnering generally favorable reviews. A major complaint in the 2015 contest was the lack of participants, something we tried to remedy this year with reminder emails.* The bands were not the greatest, but the emails seem to have worked, and brought the contestants out, at least in the phone portion of the contest.

And, due to the generosity of Bob Rosier, K4OCE, we will be offering a brand new 2m/440 BaoFeng UV5R handheld as a prize to one lucky CQ-WE participant. The UV5R is a neat little unit which in addition to being a nice two-band transceiver also covers a lot of the VHF and UHF frequencies as a scanner. The handheld will be awarded via a random drawing from among all the participants who qualify for a contest certificate (contest committee members excluded).

* - If you did not receive these reminder emails this year and would like to get them, please email our National Coordinator with a statement that you'd like to be added to the list so that you'll receive future mailings about the contest.

W2EQ — Back in the Saddle... Last year, due to an unfortunate set of circumstances, we conducted the CQ-WE contest without a National Coordinator. Determined not to let this happen again, Tom Brown, W2EQ, agreed to step up and re-assume the role. Tom will be our NC for this year's contest and will continue in this capacity until another NC can be named. Tom brings with him a strong résumé, having served as the contest NC from 2011 to 2014. On behalf of the committee as a whole, we thank Tom for his continuing dedication to the CQ-WE contest and welcome him back as our new CQ-WE National Coordinator.

And, while we're at it, please note that we are always looking for people who would be interested in serving on the CQ-WE Contest Committee. The job entails email discussions with other committee-members concerning proposed rule changes, some prep work for the contest, and in short making sure all the bases are covered so the contest come off without a hitch. A history of steady participation in CQ-WE and a knowledge of the contest itself, as well as a can-do attitude, are definite pluses. If you are interested in being considered for the position, let one of the committee members know and we'll be happy to keep you in mind the next time we are looking for some new blood.

HAVE A QUESTION about CQ-WE? Email the National Coordinator. Interested in discussing the contest or just want to keep in touch? Feel free to join Ma-Bell-Hams, a Yahoo E-mail Group where such discussions are welcome: Just enter your email address in the space below and click "Join Now!".

HELP US COMPILE a Historical Record of our Bell System Locations and Ham Clubs: A big part of the CQ-WE contest is communicating with as many different Location Codes as possible. The locations these codes represent made up the once great Bell System. Today, many — actually, most — of these locations, along with their location-sanctioned ham clubs, are either defunct or a shadow of their former selves.

The CQ-WE committee is undertaking a project to resurrect and preserve a history of the various Bell System locations before this information and heritage is permanently lost. But, its success depends on you! Please check our Location Histories page, and if you can provide some information on a missing location — or additional information on one that has already been published — consider authoring a short article describing your location. If it supported a corporate ham club, please include your remembrances of that, too. Use the existing write-ups as guides for style and format. Please send your material to the CQ-WE webmaster, cqwe-web-2016@cboh.org, and we'll put it up on the web site to highlight your location for posterity, and even give you credit in the byline. By taking a few minutes to document what you know from your personal experience with AT&T and its subsidiaries, we hope to preserve some of the rich history of the many facets of the once proud and great Bell System.

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