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Rural Telecom, established in 1981, is the quarterly magazine
published by NTCA–The Rural Broadband Association, a
nonprofit, cooperative corporation formed in 1954 under the
laws of the District of Columbia.
NTCA’s Mission: NTCA–The Rural Broadband Association
works on behalf of small broadband providers who are working
on behalf of rural America.
NTCA represents more than 800 small, rural, locally owned and
operated broadband companies in the United States and
abroad, as well as state and regional telephone associations
and companies that are the suppliers of products and services
to the small and rural broadband industry. Our readers are the
managers, directors, attorneys and key employees of these
broadband companies as well as consultants, government
officials and telecommunications experts.
NTCA Board of Directors, General Counsel
and Chief Executive Officer
President: Kevin Beyer
Vice President: Allen R. Hoopes
Secretary/Treasurer: J. Frederick Johnson
Central Region Commercial: Doug Boone
Cooperative: Ron Hinds
North Central Region Commercial: John Klatt
Cooperative: Kevin Beyer
Northeast Region Commercial: Mike Grisham
Cooperative: Barry Adair
Northwest Region Commercial: Allen R. Hoopes
Cooperative: Don Bitz
Southeast Region Commercial: H. Keith Oliver
Cooperative: J. Frederick Johnson
Southwest Region Commercial: Russell Moore
Cooperative: William P. Hegmann
General Counsel: Don Richards
Chief Executive Officer: Shirley Bloomfield
Statements of Opinion and Fact are the individual views of the
authors and not necessarily the positions of NTCA, its officers,
directors, members or staff.
© 2019 NTCA–The Rural Broadband Association
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By Christian Hamaker, Editor
How’s your new year going? If you’re a rural-broadband company
manager, you’re probably feeling more confident, or at least relieved.
2018 went out on a high note after the FCC’s adoption of an order providing greater
sufficiency for the high-cost Universal Service Fund (USF). The order is, in the words
of NTCA–The Rural Broadband Association Chief Executive Officer Shirley Bloomfield,
“a watershed moment in our nation’s long-running effort to promote and sustain uni-
versal service in a broadband world.”
As you contemplate how this order may help your telco, make sure NTCA’s annual
meeting, RTIME, is part of your decision-making. This issue’s cover story includes a mes-
sage from keynote speaker Seth Mattison, details about NTCA’s new GetIN membership
campaign, a deeper dive on RTIME educational content and ways you can celebrate
landmark anniversaries for NTCA Rural Broadband PAC and the Foundation for Rural
Service. If you’re on-site at RTIME in New Orleans, use this issue to enhance your show
experience. If you’re at home, read up on how you can follow along on social media.
New Orleans isn’t the only hub of industry activity this winter. A new Congress has
arrived on Capitol Hill, and the FCC is moving ahead with its 2019 agenda. Learn about
NTCA’s legislative and regulatory priorities in our annual overviews beginning on pp.
28–29. And for a reminder of all that the industry experienced last year, consult Rural
Telecom’s “Year in Review” roundup of 2018 articles on pp. 40–41.
Whether you’re a telco using new USF funds to expand your network or a solutions
provider offering the latest resources to retain customers and boost bottom lines, we
hope you’ll continue to look first to NTCA meetings—like RTIME—and publications—
like the one you’re reading now—as essential industry resources that can help you
make the most of a more favorable regulatory environment.
The Rural Broadband
Agenda for the