2012 Broadband Communities Summit
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Dear Colleagues,

Last April, hundreds of us joined together at the Broadband Communities Summit in Dallas, TX, for an intensive, full-day program on broadband, economic development, and job creation. Hundreds more watched the program live on BroadbandUS.TV. The event was so successful on multiple levels, that Broadband Communities has invited me to organize an expanded program on these critical issues for the next Broadband Summit in April 2012.

This year’s program will extend through the whole day of April 24 and (at least) the morning of April 25. We will focus on the issues that last year’s speakers and audience considered most significant and on the important new developments of the last year. Once again, we will bring together several of America’s most knowledgeable and experienced experts to share their experiences, insights, and predictions with us. We will draw from multiple disciplines and from both the public and private sectors. In particular, we will emphasize the practical lessons that we are learning from stimulus-funded projects, from gigabit pilot programs, and from several other interesting public and private initiatives. We will cover the key federal, state and local policy issues, various creative financing mechanisms, the most pressing infrastructure issues, and the many other important factors that can significantly affect broadband, economic development, and job creation. Improving on last year, we will also provide more time during and between sessions for members of the audience to interact with our speakers and with each other.

We not only invite you to join us in in Dallas in April, but also to help us shape the program. If you have questions or issues that you would like us to cover, or if you have information or ideas that you believe would strengthen the program, please contact me or the staff of Broadband Communities as soon as possible. Let’s build on last year’s good start and make this year’s program an important milestone in America’s progress toward economic vitality through ubiquitous and affordable access to world-class broadband.

The Baller Herbst Law Group, PC 2014 P Street, NW Suite 200 Washington, DC 20036
Program Chairman: Jim Baller

Jim Baller is the president of the Baller Herbst Law Group in Washington, DC. He represents clients in a broad range of communications matters nationally and in more than 35 states. He was the founder and president of the US Broadband Coalition, a consortium of more than 160 organizations of all kinds that helped build a national consensus on the need for a comprehensive national broadband strategy and recommended the framework that is reflected in the FCC’s National Broadband Plan. He has been working with Google on its Fiber for Communities initiative, and he is the co-host of BroadbandUS.TV’s broadband television policy series, “Inside Voices on Critical Choices.”

The Fiber to the Home Council has recognized Jim as "the nation's most experienced and knowledgeable attorney on public broadband matters." In 2001, the National Association of Telecommunications Officers and Advisors designated him its Member of the Year. In 2007, Washingtonian Magazine listed Jim as one of "Washington's Best Lawyers," and NATOA made him its first “Community Broadband Visionary of the Year,” for "almost single-handedly putting the need for a national broadband strategy to the forefront of public consciousness." In 2009, Ars Technica included Jim on its list of the 25 “Top Names in Tech Policy,” and FiberToday named him as its “Person of the Year.”

He is a graduate of Dartmouth College and Cornell Law School.

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