Comments to Exploring Advisor’s Training

I’m Travis Williams, and I’m the commissioner of the Greater LA Council. I’m also a level 3 communicator in CalOES through the LA City Fire Department, Battalion 5 ACS.

I’m a commissioner because I’ve been Scouting my whole life. I’m in the fire auxiliary because scouting has taught me the disproportionate impact of even just a little bit of public service.

In ham radio, in our EmComm training, one of the things that they taught us was that in the hours that followed the Loma Prieta earthquake 30 years ago, the sole communications link between Palo Alto City EOC and the Santa Clara County American Red Cross in Mountain View was a professor in the engineering school at Stanford who, when the shaking stopped, took a charged 2m handheld off his desk and walked down the street to city hall. Of course, he took the charger, because he knew there would be power at the EOC, but he knew they needed him because the phones were down.

For volunteers like me, the transcript of the South Bay ARC repeater that followed is amazing and totally eye-opening. You do this sort of work every day.

You know, because you see them every week, that you are training peace officers, first responders, command officers, and elected officials. What you might not realize is that you are also training me, a chemistry professor at USC who has a charged 2m handheld on his desk and drives around with not less than a half a tank of gas and a 50 W repeater in the trunk. Oh, and FCC plates, because our battalion chief practically insisted.

Thank you for your service to our young people; it’s a privilege to be part of your team.


Travis J. Williams, Ph.D.
Future Scout Parent