Medical Fund Established for James Bongiorno

James Bongiorno needs your help. The legendary electronics designer, whose pioneering work with fully complementary solid-state amplifiers has become part of engineering's standard lexicon, is battling liver cancer.

Among the many products attributed to him are the Dynaco Dyna 400; the SAE Mk.III CM; the Great American Sound Ampzilla and Ampzilla II; the GAS Thaedra preamp; and various Sumo products, including the Power, the Gold (the first high-power class-A amplifier), and the Andromeda. Bongiorno holds several patents, including one for class-A amplification and another for FM tuner circuitry. He sold Sumo in 1984, after his illness was diagnosed. Treatment was successful, and the deadly ailment was in remission until recently.

In the intervening years, Bongiorno has supported himself as a designer on contract to several high-end companies, and by performing repairs and upgrades on the many products he designed and manufactured. He has just finished a design for a new monoblock power amplifier, the "Rex," which incorporates the very latest components and semiconductors into his signature circuitry. The Rex, Bongiorno states, will be a fully complementary, fully balanced 200W amplifier capable of handling loads of extremely low impedance, and will be available at a reasonable price. He hopes to have the first prototypes on the market within six months.

Due to his medical history, Bongiorno has been unable to obtain health insurance, and lacks the resources for needed treatment. For that reason, a medical expense fund has been established for him at the Montecito Bank and Trust in Santa Barbara, CA. Initial treatments will run approximately $25,000. The costs could exceed 10 times that amount if a liver transplant becomes necessary.

Donations in any amount will be gratefully appreciated. Checks should be made payable to "The Fund for James Bongiorno" and sent to the Montecito Bank and Trust, 1000 State Street, Santa Barbara, CA 93101. The fund is being administered by the bank's customer service manager, Krissi Wray, who will be happy to answer questions from potential donors. Ms. Wray can be reached at (805) 564-0220.

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