After 13 years with the Texas Telephone Association, I’m moving on.
As I move to my next adventure in retirement, my tenure at TTA has been an incredible experience. I have had the opportunity to witness the positive impact our industry has had on the Texas communities we serve.
As the holidays are upon us and 2019 winding to a close, we have plenty to be proud of.
I’m proud TTA is more visible and is serving as a strong advocate for the Texas telecommunications industry.
From a busy regular session of the 2019 Texas Legislature to key proceedings at the Public Utility Commission of Texas, the state’s telecommunications industry had a strong year as member companies worked together to advance policies for a strong industry.
From legislation on rural broadband to key universal service fund regulatory proceedings, we put our best foot forward to benefit the industry.
At the same time, after overwhelming support from TTA members, I was surprised that association merger efforts fell short. However, I am thrilled to see the renewed support and enthusiasm of TTA member companies – and with the new companies we have gained as membership continues to grow – I am confident that TTA will continue to be the leading voice on telecommunications issues now and in the future.
The TTA team is continuing to work on Texas universal service fund issues at the Texas PUC including filings related to the reforms we achieved with SB 586. That legislation, approved by the Legislature in 2017, was a signature event for TTA and an achievement that I will always be extremely proud of. The TTA team – including Dennis Donley, Wes Robinson, Scott Stringer, Ian Randolph and John Hubbard – was relentless in their efforts to achieve our goal.
The TTA team will continue to advocate for policies to support a strong industry while making sure rural Texans will continue to reap the benefits of high-quality communications to support schools, hospitals, businesses and consumers while rural telecommunications companies will have the capital they need to maintain and upgrade their networks.
Looking ahead, this is an exciting time for TTA. We have adopted new bylaws and our membership recently elected a new board of directors. They have already planned a meeting in Austin in January to kickstart the new year.
The new TTA board includes Charlie Greenberg, president of Btel; Russell “Rusty” Moore, general manager and chief operating officer of BBT: Steven Steele, CEO and general manager of Peoples Telephone Cooperative: Amy Linzey, chief executive officer of West Texas Rural Telephone Cooperative Inc.: Jamey Wigley, general manager of Central Texas Telephone Cooperative: Jennifer Otwell, vice president and general manager of Totelcom Communications; Charlie Cano, general manager and chief executive officer of Etex Telephone Cooperative; Dave Osborn, chief executive officer of VTX1 Companies; and Rusty Dorman, general manager of Eastex Telephone Cooperative Inc.
Many thanks to our current and past TTA board members. We appreciate their tireless work and dedication to the association and the industry.
After working in the telecommunications industry for decades, I continue to marvel how quickly technology is changing and I look forward to more changes on the horizon. I
t truly has been a privilege to have known and worked with so many creative and inspiring people over the years.
Although I’m saying goodbye as executive director of TTA, I won’t be far. Drop me a line sometime.