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Posted by Cory Garone on 5/11/20 5:19 PM

Today's Regulatory Mix: USDA Announces Broadband Award in New Hampshire, FCC Announces Changes in Media Relations Office

USDA Announces Broadband Award in New Hampshire

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue announced that the USDA is investing $2 million to provide broadband service in unserved and underserved rural areas in New Hampshire.  This funding is part of USDA’s round one investments through the ReConnect Pilot Program.fa-policy-usda-building-1

“The need for rural broadband has never been more apparent than it is now – as our nation manages the coronavirus national emergency.  Access to telehealth services, remote learning for school children, and remote business operations all require access to broadband,” said Secretary Perdue.  “I am so proud of our rural communities who have been working day in and day out, just like they always do, producing the food and fiber America depends on.  We need them more than ever during these trying times, and expanding access to this critical infrastructure will help ensure rural America prospers for years to come.”

FCC Announces Changes in Media Relations Office

Chairman Ajit Pai announced staff changes in the Office of Media Relations, including the appointment of a new deputy director, the promotions of both a new associate director and a new senior communications advisor, and the departure of the press secretary.

Businesswoman standing on stage and reporting for audienceThe new FCC deputy director of communications, Anne Veigle, will come to the FCC from the Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration, where she served as director of public affairs.  Will Wiquist, currently the FCC’s deputy press secretary, will serve as associate director of communications and policy advisor.  Katie Gorscak will become senior communications advisor, transitioning from her role as director of communications of the agency’s Connect2Health Task Force.  And press secretary Tina Pelkey has departed the agency for a new position in the private sector. 

“We have an outstanding media relations team that deftly handles far more than one might think possible for such a small group,” said Chairman Pai.  “I am excited that Anne is joining this excellent team.  Her deep reporting and public relations experience in the telecom sector are a perfect addition.  I congratulate Will on this well-deserved promotion and welcome his continued wise counsel.  I also congratulate Katie on her promotion and am grateful to her for her willingness to broaden her portfolio.”

“I also want to thank Tina Pelkey for her fantastic work during her nearly three years at the Commission.  She has been incredibly responsive both internally and externally, has shown outstanding strategic thinking and leadership, and has been an excellent writer and speaking coach (not that I’ve slowed down my speaking quite as much as she would like!).  And on a personal note, I’m very grateful for her friendship—I’ve really enjoyed our conversations about the Kansas City Chiefs (our favorite team), our families, and all sorts of other matters.  We will all miss Tina, and I sincerely thank her for her public service.”

 

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The Regulatory Mix, Inteserra’s blog of telecom related regulatory activities, is a snapshot of PUC, FCC, legislative, and occasionally court issues that our regulatory monitoring team uncovers each day. Depending on their significance, some items may be the subject of an Inteserra Briefing.

 

State Regulatory Actions COVID-19

 

Topics: FCC, FCC's Media Bureau, FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, high-speed broadband, 5G Technology, USDA's Reconnect Pilot Program, USDA’s ReConnect program, USDA Broadband Investments, COVID-19

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