I was honored to be invited by the FCC’s Office of Workplace Diversity to share some words of wisdom (at least hopefully they were somewhat wise!) with the FCC staff at their observance of Women’s history Month 2018. The theme for this year was “Nevertheless She Persisted, Women Who Fight All Forms Of Discrimination” and I shared some thoughts and dialogue with the FCC staff that came to participate in the discussion.
Chairman Pai kicked off the event with an interesting historical reminder of the role that star Hedy Lamarr had played in spectrum development. Many remember Hedy for roles she played in films in the 1940’s but Chairman Pai reminded attendees of her far more intriguing accomplishment of developing a radio guidance system for Allied torpedoes which utilized spread spectrum and frequency hopping technology. She and her partner were inducted into the National Inventors Hall Of Fame for developing the legacy versions of CDMA and WI-FI technology. (Of course when I was checking out her bio, I was also struck by the list of 6 spouses she married over the course of 30 years AND her innovation in the early development of carbonated beverage – clearly a busy woman!)
I was glad that the event came on Tuesday instead of Wednesday given the spring winter storm that came through DC today and would have cancelled the gathering…just like the Small Business Committee hearing that was cancelled even after Doug Boone, CEO of Premier Communications in Iowa had flown out to testify on behalf of NTCA’s members on the important role that rural broadband plays as part of the nation’s infrastructure discussion. With a little luck, a new airline ticket and plenty of time being de-iced, at least Doug was able to make it back to the cold midwest and got to experience DC in the snow…a frightening experience for someone who thinks nothing of a healthy 6 inches coming down. Appreciated Doug’s efforts and am hopeful that he’ll get a raincheck offer to come back out again to share Premier’s story.