ABOUT BOB PADULA....!! A mini-autiobiography

I was born in 1939 in Melbourne; my father was an Italian immigrant who had established the Grumento Paving Company which he managed until his passing in 1981, for an amazing unbroken period of some 40 years. My late mother was Australian, whose father had emigrated from England by sailing ship at the turn of the century.

My interest in radio goes back to my schooldays, when I was given a crystal set as a birthday present in 1950. I used to avidly read each issue of "Radio and Hobbies" magazine, and built many of the sets described, beginning with single valve devices, right up to a multi-wave, bandspread, communications receiver.

My first QSLs were for 1954 reception of Radio Japan and Radio Sweden, and since then the count has accumulated to nearly 8000 SW QSLs, probably some sort of record! The response rate over all those years has been about 80%.

The first shortwave radio which I bought was a five-valve dual wave set, in 1954, which I bought at Maxwell's here in Melbourne for the enormous sum of six pounds ten shillings, taking several weeks' wages from my after-school work as a chemist's delivery boy. That radio tuned from 42-13 metres, rather than succeeding models which covered 49-16 metres. Interestingly, my chemist boss, Wellington Lee, is still in business, running a pharmacy in Exhibition St, opposite Telstra's HQ!

I graduated to an AR8 airforce military disposals receiver in 1960. I then bought a Marconi CR100 in 1965, which I extensively modified, which was ultimately retired in 1995.

Currently, I use a National DR49 (bought new in 1976 and still as strong as ever!), and a Yaesu FRG800.

For my world travels, I take along the brilliant Sangean ATS 808A portable, which has served me well in the Borneo jungles and rivers, across Vietnam and Europe, and for various DX-peditions to such exotic places back home as the Grampians, and Wilson's Promontory!

I started full-time work with the then PMG's Department back in 1956 as a Technician-in-Training, where I survived for 41 years until leaving Telstra in 1998, the final 33 years in a professional capacity. I am a Chartered Professional Engineer, (CPEng, MIEust). I am currently performing professional engineering consultancy, in the broadcast engineering field, which includes technical writing and radio propagation research.

I was honoured by the Australian Government with the Medal of the Order of Australia in 1981, "for services to Shortwave Radio", an award which was totally unexpected.

In 1965, I was one of a handful of hobbyists who set up the Australian Radio DX Club, and in 1972 I was awarded Life Membership privileges, the first such award to be made by the Club, a distinction witch I value greatly. Since inception of the Club I had been actively involved with its administration continuously, in many portfolios, ultimately holding the elected office of President until December 1995. I have not stood for re-election since then due to pressure of family and work commitments.

I was part of the initial editorial team of "Amateur Radio Action", looking after the first SWL column, and some four years ago I created the "Electronic DX Press", a free e-mailed newsletter with a global distribution.

In between attending to radio-related activities, I enjoy travelling the world, specially to strange places. I am involved in bushwalking, bike riding, and swimming and have substantially completed a major restoration of my 1927 period home.

My overall personal objective with my radio hobby work is to help others, and provide leadership and direction, as I believed, and still do, that world radio monitoring is an activity which can be pursued indefinitely, irrespective of the particular technology on which it is based.

It is with that hope that I have accepted various writing responsibilities, and I trust that the experience, skills and knowledge I can bring to bear on this work will materially assist readers in their pursuit of radio broadcasting monitoring, at whatever level of interest they choose. (January, 2001)

You will find further biographies about me in:

"Men of Achievement", published by the International Biographical Centre, Cambridge, England

"The International Directory of Distinguished Leadership", published by the American Biographical Institute, USA