Rural Broadband Track

Tuesday, August 11

2:10 pm – 3:00 pm

The Rural Digital Opportunity Fund – What Does it Mean to You?

The FCC, with its newly implemented Rural Digital Opportunity Fund (RDOF) is distributing lots of money for financing rural broadband. Our panel of experts will guide you through what the fund is and what it means for your company, co-op, or community.


Drew Clark – Editor and Publisher,

Carol Mattey – Founder, Mattey Consulting

3:10 pm – 4:00 pm

Wireless Service in Rural American, Licensed and Unlicensed

Wireless Internet Service Providers are among the companies most at the forefront of helping Rural American meet its broadband needs. Most of them currently make use of unlicensed radio frequencies. This panel will consider a number of licensed or quasi-licensed frequencies that will be soon be available for auction by the FCC in the Citizens Broadband Radio Service (CBRS) band, as well as other wireless uses for delivering broadband.


Wednesday, August 12

8:00 am – 8:50 am

Connecting the Middle Mile and the Last Mile in Rural America

Numerous examples of middle-mile networks, including ones in Massachusetts, North Carolina, Illinois and Kentucky, have appeared in recent years. Come review the progress middle mile networks have made connecting to last-mile networks in rural America.


Mark Wagner – CEO, ThinkBig Networks
Essam El-Beik – Consultant, Illinois Century Network

9:00 am – 9:50 am

Rural Success Stories

What kind of a difference does broadband make when deployed in rural America? This session will explore numerous "success stories," and will examine what they have been able to do with their improved broadband. Come learn from them what you can do to enhance broadband adoption in your community.

10:00 am – 10:50 am

Better Broadband Mapping for Rural America

Much of the recent legislative focus on broadband mapping at the FCC and on Capitol Hill has been driven by concerns from constituents in rural areas who are considered "covered," when they are in fact living in a broadband desert. This session will consider recent controversies in broadband mapping, discuss the FCC’s Digital Opportunity Data Collection Report, and examine what particular communities are doing to map out broadband.


Jack Lynch – Director of State Engagements, Education SuperHighway
Glenn Fishbine – Chief Technology Officer, NEO Partners, LLC

12:45 pm – 2:05 pm

Cornerstone Awards Luncheon

Sponsored by Verizon


Ted Maulucci – President, SmartONE Solutions


Thursday, August 13

8:00 am – 9:00 am

Apps for Rural America: Putting Better Broadband to Better Uses

Broadband matters not because of the "feeds and speeds," but because of the uses to which it is put. These include telehealth, education, senior connected living and telecommuting. What do these apps mean for rural America? Do they work? Are there legislative, policy or business insurance hurdles to overcome as they are used more and more in rural areas? These are just a few of the questions, come hear the answers.

9:10 am – 10:00 am

Opportunity Zones and Foundations

This session will explore the productive collaborations currently underway between foundations, rural communities, and investors seeking to take advantage of the savings available in the tax reform bill’s Opportunity Zones. The panel will specifically explore broadband's role in Opportunity Zones.


Jane Smith Patterson – President, Jane Patterson & Associates

September 22-24, 2020

Virtual on the vFair platform

Photo Gallery

Here's a glance at last year's Conference & Expo.

Look who you'll meet at the Summit

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