Rural is Cool

Rural is Cool

Look what was found on the top of Mount Kilimanjaro, where only the hardiest of climbers can make their way to the summit.  Yes, former NTCA board President and Blackfoot Telecom CEO, Earl Owens and his wife along with his Rural Is Cool bumper sticker!  Making its way all the way to Tanzania, the highest mountain in Africa, the message reminding folks – even those who do not speak English as their main language – that rural holds a very important…

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Cyber Month….Are You Ready?

Cyber Month….Are You Ready?

The more I hear about cyber threats and the “spot on” but frightening adage that it’s not “if” but “when” you’ll be impacted by an attack, the more I am motivated to ensure that NTCA stays in front of our membership pushing cyber awareness. How appropriate that our upcoming Cybersecurity Summit will take place next week – smack in the middle of Cybersecurity Awareness Month. The location is central, in Kansas City, in the early part of next week and…

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Oh Give Me A Home….

Oh Give Me A Home….

It’s the last regional of the year as we kick off in Jackson, Wyoming this week.  We’re between seasons here in Jackson which means the room rates are hovering at $100 a night or about double the price of valet parking at a DC hotel, the streets are a tad quiet and the snow fell beautifully the other evening as I lugged my parka gladly around with me for this meeting.  In addition, NTCA member SilverStar Communications serves in the…

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National Farmers Day

National Farmers Day

October 12 was National Farmers Day and it recalled for me the time an NTCA member was making a passionate plea with a Hill staffer on the role that broadband plays in rural America and how that use of technology  feeds into a more robust agriculture economy.  He was stopped in his tracks when the staffer informed him that most of what he was saying was irrelevant because food actually comes from a store. Hmmmm.  It sounds like there is…

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Wireless Needs Wires…Still!

Wireless Needs Wires…Still!

It feels like it is wireless week in DC….a summit on 5G technology, the announcement from Frontier that they will be using CAF II resources to build out some of their most rural portions of their service area with a point-to-multipoint radio technology, Google’s announcement that Google Loon will be bringing cell coverage to devastated Puerto Rico to get them up and running again on the communications front (which relies on wireless backhaul from cell phone companies – another challenge…

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Continuing USF Discussions With Commissioner O’Rielly

Continuing USF Discussions With Commissioner O’Rielly

I’m few days behind but Mike Romano and I had a very productive meeting last week over at the FCC with Commissioner O’Rielly, who has been key the past few years in the development and formulation of next steps to go on the USF front.  I was really grateful to hear the Commissioner’s recent remarks where he noted that in spite of all of the work on USF reform done to date, there was still more work to do.  Working…

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Warrior Women

Warrior Women

I tend to be proud of myself when I make my way to the gym three times a week and spend 30 minutes on the cross trainer, lift a few weights and stretch.  Mission accomplished.  When my girls decided, 11 months ago, to run the Chicago Marathon together, I had a great deal of mixed emotions about the entire adventure.  While I love anything that has my two girls doing anything together, it was hard not to recall history and…

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SMC Team Are All Rock Stars!

SMC Team Are All Rock Stars!

The end of this week has myself and a few of our Arlington team down in Asheville at our SMC operation for our annual SMC planning session.  These two days of discussion are the perfect opportunity for key members of our team  – focused on the benefits that we provide to our member companies  – to reflect on the services we offer and how we continue to adapt to the changing benefit needs of NTCA members as their industry, environment…

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USDA Secretary Perdue Calls “Cutting Red Tape” Discussion

USDA Secretary Perdue Calls “Cutting Red Tape” Discussion

I was finally able to meet our new USDA Secretary Perdue today at his roundtable “rap session” that he and his team had pulled together for today to talk about how to cut red tape at USDA and “liberate America from bureaucracy.”  The Secretary reiterated the White House’s commitment to find ways to streamline processes and eliminate excess regulation in an effort to create jobs and generate economic growth.  All of that is good news for rural America if things…

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Find The Time To Catch Your Breath

Find The Time To Catch Your Breath

With all of the challenges of working on behalf of the rural telecom industry these days, running a trade association with all that is associated there,  as well as being in Washington DC in general, it’s nice to be able to unwind with those you work with…and the NTCA team certainly took advantage of that at our Rural is Cool reception at the Fall Conference in Philly.  I was kind of sorry to discover the photo booth, complete with props,…

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