A Productive Fall Conference With A Full Agenda

A Productive Fall Conference With A Full Agenda

I’m still winging my way back to DCA as we wrapped up another successful Fall Conference – this one in Seattle – and had the opportunity to share ideas, programming and some great networking with 1500 of our NTCA members.  From augmented reality (which, btw, will require a robust broadband network) to life lessons, to how millennials use technology to tips on how to create partnerships to a recap of the flurry of DC regulatory and legislative activity to wireless…

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Meet me in St. Louis…with NISC

Meet me in St. Louis…with NISC

I have always appreciated the friendship and partnership that NISC has with NTCA—from their work with our members, to their wonderful support for our programs, especially Smart Rural Community and the Foundation for Rural Service—so it was an easy call to say yes to bopping out to their user group meeting in St. Louis earlier this week. They mentioned that over 2,600 folks would be there, but I have to admit, I didn’t think that nearly that many would show…

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A Day to Never Forget

A Day to Never Forget

I have no idea what it is about my travel schedule, but I almost always seem to be on a plane on 9/11 and I always find myself thinking back to 2001 when I was also supposed to be on a plane back to D.C. from the TTA meeting in Texas. I remember watching with my fellow Americans as our collective hearts broke and our false sense of security was shattered forever. I will never forget the kindness of NTCA…

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Worry More about the Grid With Storms Pending – Then Let’s Talk More About Partnerships!

Worry More about the Grid With Storms Pending – Then Let’s Talk More About Partnerships!

There has been so much talk in D.C. (and in the field) about the future of rural broadband and who is going to build it. I know for a fact that NTCA members have done a yeoman job on extending rural networks, building fiber into areas of the country they serve, and crafting federal and state policies that will allow them to edge out even further into the adjoining areas that have gone unserved by other providers. Electric co-ops have been…

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Sharing Thoughts with RUS

Sharing Thoughts with RUS

RUS and USDA are hard at work gathering feedback on their recently released NOI on the new rural broadband pilot program with comments due at the start of next week. The process has been fast and furious and I hope that USDA is just as fast and furious when it comes to releasing funds out the door to rural broadband providers who utilize it so they can continue to build in areas where deployment is needed. It is going to…

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When Washington DC Meets Rural South Dakota

When Washington DC Meets Rural South Dakota

NTCA’s Foundation for Rural Service does so very much for the rural broadband industry and even more for the communities that these companies serve—but one of my favorite FRS activities is their annual trek out of D.C. with a gaggle of Capitol Hill staffers and into the real world (i.e. out of D.C.!) to see how rural networks are built and to help them better understand the challenges of broadband deployment where the land is vast and the people far…

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Strengthening Your DEFENSE

Strengthening Your DEFENSE

National security is a hot topic here in D.C. and I recently asked someone who works in that space what their biggest concern was, and it wasn’t a nuclear attack from North Korea or implications from the fall out of the Iran nuclear deal—it was cybersecurity—without a moment of hesitation. At NTCA, we’ve really been focused on the cyber threat and the tools needed to help NTCA members manage and protect their networks and I am really proud of the…

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Farewell to an FCC Era

Farewell to an FCC Era

Washington, D.C. can actually be a small town and telecom/broadband circles can make the city feel even smaller. So, while I was very sorry to see Amy Bender, legal advisor to FCC Commissioner Michael O’Rielly, leave her post at the FCC this week, I know that our paths will cross again in her next “gig”. After Amy’s very distinguished 14-year career with the agency and after all of her hard work on topics as critical as the Universal Service Fund,…

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Everyone Has Their John McCain Story

Everyone Has Their John McCain Story

…and I have mine as well. It was (literally) decades ago when everyone in DC’s telecommunications circles was working on crafting what became the Telecommunications Act of 1996. Sen. McCain was a member of the prestigious Senate Commerce Committee and a key player on the majority team as the legislation was crafted over a series of years. Per his usual operation, he forged his own path through the negotiations and discussions including proposing a phone voucher program–a creative idea but…

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America the Beautiful

America the Beautiful

Katharine Lee Bates, born in 1859, was an American writer, poet and professor at Wellesley College in Massachusetts. Her claim to fame was not so much what she taught in the classroom, but what she was able to achieve far from a blackboard. In her many travels, Bates spent a summer in 1893 teaching a course at Colorado College in Colorado Springs when she and a group of other teachers decided to go on a trip to the top of…

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