Laura Breeden

Board Chair
National Digital Inclusion Alliance (NDIA)


Laura Breeden has been working to extend the benefits of the Internet to new audiences since 1983, when she joined a technology company in Cambridge, Massachusetts. There were about 100 computers on the Internet then. Laura saw the potential of the Internet to bring people together, share information, and create social movements that would upend the rules of the game. She has been a leader in community computing and networking ever since.

Laura served as founding director of the Federation of American Research Networks (1991-1994) and of the Technology Opportunities Program at the U.S Department of Commerce (1994-1996). She has been a consultant to universities, foundations, nonprofit organizations and other clients; directed a national technical assistance collaborative for community technology centers; and spoken at national and international conferences on digital equity.

Laura returned to the Department of Commerce in 2009 to become Program Director for Public Computing and Broadband Adoption at the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA). Under her leadership, the Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP) awarded more than $450 million in matching grants for projects to make essential computer and Internet services more available, affordable, and useful for people left on the wrong side of the digital divide. Since retiring from NTIA in 2015 Laura has been on the Board of the National Digital Inclusion Alliance (, where she is now Chair.

October 30 – 31, 2019

The Westin Alexandria Old Town in Alexandria, VA

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