Chris.... Thank you for your input on this issue.  The solution ended up being a lot easier. It was user error. 

I had created a second version of this DTL to test out modification for anticipated future file formats.  The DTL is actually used as a subtransformation, so the outer DTL was pointed to the second version while I was making the above modifications on the original version. 

The simple solution ended up being:      ..Strip(source.{loop2000(k1).loop2100A.PER:CommunicationNumber},"*AW","-()/")

I have tried adding the P, so that my action is *AWP.  I have also tried using "E" as the action, which strips everything and use "1234567890" as the keepchar value.   That didn't work either. 

Thanks!  I did figure out that -9 was the value I needed and it is now working.

I was also able to get the $extract to compile, but still not getting it to remove the leading character. However,  I feel this is the correct route for me to pursue. Thanks

I was able to get the 'Edit' suggestion (..SubString(string,..Length(string)-10)) to compile, but it did not remove the leading character as intended.

The actual answer was much more simple.  In the Record Mapper, first I unchecked the "Quote Escaping" box.  Then once I realized I can have more than one character as a field separator (single comma), I used 'quote comma quote' (",") as my field separator.  Worked as needed. 

Thanks for your input!