Arizona Mesh Organization

One day in 2016 a ham friend of mine stopped by the house to chat for a while. Somewhere in the conversation he mentioned something about Mesh Networking. Although I knew about mesh systems being used in commercial applications, I had no idea that as Hams we had some privileges in the 13-centimeter portion of the Wi-Fi bands. My friend began telling me how some hams are using this area of the bands to create their own Mesh network. I thought this was the coolest thing since sliced bread.

After my friend left, I went inside the house and started Google searching what a Ham radio Mesh net is. I thought this would be a great mode of operations in the event of an emergency. I called my friend Larry AB7C and talked to him about this Wi-Fi thing for about two hours. While on the phone with him he began searching the net as well. He too thought this is a great idea.
Within a week Larry and I programmed a couple of old Linksys routers and put them on a pole and stuck them up in the air. Larry is about 4 miles away from me. All be darned if we did not connect to each other on our own little Mesh.

Now that we were connected, we thought, now what do we do. As time went on Larry and I thought of how a Ham Radio Mesh Network could benefit the public in the event of an emergency. Of course, we live in Mesa Arizona and just about the only emergency that we could face that could use a Mesh Network would be a power outage. .

We soon found out that if we did this right, we could do just about everything you can do on the Internet over our Mesh Network. We started with our own phone PBX and email system, both of which are still running today. .

In 2018 we started getting more and more people involved in Mesh Networking, and in 2019 we co-founded the Arizona Mesh Organization, with the help of fellow interested hams, it is now a 501 (c) (3) non-profit ham radio club, exclusively for Ham Radio Mesh Networking. We have around 50 members at the time of this writing, and we have grown to having over 100 Mesh Nodes up around the East Valley and have recently expanded to the far West Valley, including Wickenburg, and Maricopa. Although we want to cover the entire state of Arizona, that does not exactly mean that we will have one Mesh system covering the entire state. What the Arizona Mesh Organization would really like to see is some of our fellow ham radio operators that are scattered around the state start their own mesh networks, with the ability of the all the various networks to connect as needed. Our goal is to have each separate group of Mesh Networks join the Arizona Mesh Organization, and follow the guidelines set forth by the organization, that way we can all experience the best mesh experience possible.

The following members are founders of the Arizona Mesh Organization.

Founding Officers:                                                       2021 Officers:                                                                       2022 Officers:

Stephen Estes KB7KWK President                               Michael Bailey KI7LXY President                                          Michael Bailey KI7LXYPresident / Temporary Webmaster
Gary Hinton AC7R Vice President                                 Stephen Estes KB7KWK Vice President                               Stephen Estes KB7KWK Vice President
Scott Gillins W2KP Treasurer                                        Scott Gillins W2KP Treasurer                                                Scott Gillins W2KP Treasurer
Michael Bailey KI7LXY Secretary                                  Robert Fridel N3BZ Secretary                                               John Armstron KJ7SKC Secretary
Larry Fort AB7C Technical Committee Chairman          Larry Fort AB7C Techncal Committee Chair                          Gary Hinton AC7R Techncal Committee Chair

Founding Board Members:                                         2021 Board of Directors:                                                     2022 Board of Directoors:

Dale Schmidt N7QJK Webmaster / IT                          Dale Schmidt N7QJK Webmaster / IT                                    Tom Gofrth WY7TG
Heidi Brewer K7ZAE Emcom Advisor                          Heidi Brewer K7ZAE Emcom Advisor / Elections Chair          Charles Whitlatch W7VF
Paul Lowe N7NLY                                                        Gary Hinton AC7R                                                                 Bob Howard W8RH
Robert Fridell N3BZ                                                      Bob Howard W8RH                                                              Tom Cloonan NL7FQ
Rodney Fritz WB9KMO Workshop Host / Activities     Rodney Fritz WB9KMO Workshop Host / Activities               Rodney Fritz WB9KMO

Arizona Mesh Organization Constitution, By-Laws and Operating Practices
have been temporally disabled while board approved changes are being completed