Darnell Sutton Gives an Inspiring Speech to Encourage Ending the Digital Divide and Serving Underserved Communities During the Driving America's Growth Conference.

Darnell Sutton
Darnell Sutton Speaks at Driving America's Growth Conference

Darnell Sutton gave a Rousing speech to promote Closing the Digital Divide, Serving Underserved Communities and the expansion of Broadband Networks within Opportunity Zones.



Angie Kronenberg – Chief Advocate and General Counsel, INCOMPAS


Deborah Simpier – Co-Founder, Althea
Jase Wilson – Founder & Chairman, Neighborly
Lisa Youngers – President & CEO, Fiber Broadband Association
Darnell Sutton – President & CEO, Hollywall Development Company

The Conference and Expo Agenda:

New Technologies, New Strategies, New Services to Bridge the Digital Divide – No One Covers It Like We Do!

Weighing the Technologies — Fiber, Wireless, Fixed Wireless, Satellite — to Determine

What Works Best in Varied Scenarios

5G: Hope or Hype… and How Does Fiber Factor In?

Funding Our Infrastructure Needs

Making High-Speed Broadband Affordable for All Americans

Creating an Accurate Broadband Map

Empowering Co-ops to Provide High-Speed Broadband

Eliminating State Laws that Prohibit Communities from Addressing Local Digital Divides

Bringing Better Healthcare to All

Educating the Workforce of Tomorrow

Darnell Sutton, CEO of Hollywall
Darnell Sutton President & CEO Hollywall Development Company, LLC
Angie Kronenberg
Chief Advocate & General Counsel
Angie Kronenberg Chief Advocate & General Counsel INCOMPAS
Lisa Youngers President & CEO Fiber Broadband Association
Lisa Youngers President & CEO Fiber Broadband Association
Jase Wilson Founder & Chairman Neighborly
Jase Wilson Founder & Chairman Neighborly
Deborah Simpier Co-Founder Althea
Deborah Simpier Co-Founder Althea
Dan Urban
Vice President Operations
Corbel Communications Industries, LLC
Dan Urban Vice President Operations Corbel Communications Industries, LLC
Christopher Mitchell Director, Community Broadband Networks Institute for Local Self-Reliance
Christopher Mitchell Director, Community Broadband Networks Institute for Local Self-Reliance
Nirali Patel Wireline Adviser Office of Chairman Ajit Pai, FCC
Joseph Wender Senior Policy Adviser Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass)
Richard J. Sherwin
Spot On Networks, LLC
Richard J. Sherwin CEO Spot On Networks, LLC
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Render Orange

Complete list of speakers included: 

Virginia Lam Abrams
Senior Vice President, Communications & Government Relations
Virginia Lam Abrams is a seasoned communications and public affairs executive with two decades of experience working in technology, media and politics. … Complete Bio >>

Jonathan S. Adelstein
President & CEO
Wireless Infrastructure Association (WIA)
Jonathan S. Adelstein is the President & CEO of the Wireless Infrastructure Association (WIA). WIA represents nearly 200 companies devoted to building wireless broadband facilities that connect every corner of America. … Complete Bio >>

Melodie Anderson
Spinal Cord Injury [SCI], Telehealth Coordinator, RN
Veterans Health Administration Medical Center
bio to come … Complete Bio >>

Jim Baller
Baller Stokes & Lide, PC
Baller 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, … Complete Bio >>

Cat Blake
Senior Program Manager
Next Century Cities
At Next Century Cities, Cat supports local leaders with the tools and information they need to bring fast, affordable, reliable broadband to their constituents. Specifically, she researches and writes policy briefs, … Complete Bio >>

Shirley Bloomfield
Chief Executive Officer
NTCA–The Rural Broadband Association
Shirley Bloomfield is chief executive officer of NTCA–The Rural Broadband Association, the premier association representing nearly 850 independent, … Complete Bio >>

Gary A. Bolles
Co-Founder, eParachute
Partner, Charrette LLC
Bolles, a San Francisco–based consultant and entrepreneur focused on initiatives with impact, writes and lectures frequently on the future of work and learning. … Complete Bio >>

Mike Bosch
Founder & CEO
RG Fiber
Mike Bosch is the Founder/CEO of RG FIBER, the internet service provider disrupting the industry with a pioneering software-driven access network (SDAN). … Complete Bio >>

Paula Boyd
Director, Government and Regulatory Affairs
Microsoft Corporation
Paula is currently director of Government and Regulatory Affairs for Microsoft Corporation, where she partners with colleagues to develop Microsoft’s communications policy positions and advocates those positions before … Complete Bio >>

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. … Complete Bio >>

Robert Bridgham
Executive Director
Eastern Shore of Virginia Broadband Authority
Designed, built, configured and operated a regional fiber-optic network deploying both SONET and MetroEthernet services. … Complete Bio >>

Kirk Burgee
Wireline Competition Bureau Chief of Staff
Kirk Burgee is a Deputy Director of the Federal Communications Commission’s Rural Broadband Auctions Task Force, which has been tasked with implementing FCC auctions to allocate universal service support … Complete Bio >>

Heather Burnett Gold
HBG Strategies, LLC
Burnett Gold previously served as president/CEO of the Fiber Broadband Association (formerly the Fiber to the Home Council North America), a nonprofit organization that helps members plan, market, implement and … Complete Bio >>

Vinton G. Cerf
Vice President and Chief Internet Evangelist
Vinton G. Cerf co-designed the TCP/IP protocols and the architecture of the Internet and is Chief Internet Evangelist for Google. … Complete Bio >>

Kris Cook, CAE
Executive Director
National Affordable Housing Management Association (NAHMA)
Kris Cook, CAE, joined the National Affordable Housing Management Association (NAHMA) as its Executive Director in November 2002. NAHMA is the leading voice for affordable housing management, … Complete Bio >>

Doug Dawson
CCG Consulting
Dawson has worked in the telecom industry since 1978 and has both a consulting and an operational background. He and CCG specialize in helping clients launch new broadband markets, … Complete Bio >>

Cheryl DeBerry
Natural Resources Business Specialist
Garrett County Economic Development
Cheryl DeBerry serves on the rural broadband expansion team for Garrett County in the Appalachian mountains of far western Maryland. In her capacity, … Complete Bio >>

Mark DeFalco
Appalachian Regional Commission
DeFalco has worked in the telecommunications industry for more than 30 years. He has worked for a regional Bell company, a rural telephone holding company, a large inter-exchange carrier and … Complete Bio >>

Leo Delgado
Founder and President
Converged Services
Delgado has been actively involved with the telecommunications and broadband industry for more than 35 years. For 20 years, Converged Services has negotiated TV, internet, voice, security agreements, macro and in-building wireless solutions … Complete Bio >>

Joy Ditto
President & CEO
Utilities Technology Council (UTC)
Joy Ditto is the President and CEO of the Utilities Technology Council (UTC), a Washington, D.C.-based global trade association representing electric, gas and water utilities on their mission-critical information and communications technologies. … Complete Bio >>

Craig Eccher
President & CEO
Tri-County REC
Craig is the CEO of Tri-County Rural Electric Cooperatives located in north central Pa. He also serves as Co CEO and board member of C&T Enterprises and President and CEO of Wellsboro Electric Co. … Complete Bio >>

B. Lynn Follansbee
Vice President, Law & Policy
USTelecom – The Broadband Association
Lynn Follansbee is Vice President, Policy & Advocacy for USTelecom. She provides policy analysis and legal and regulatory support on a range of issues including universal service, privacy, mapping and consumer protection. … Complete Bio >>

Adrianne B. Furniss
Executive Director
Benton Institute for Broadband & Society
Adrianne is Executive Director, Board Member, and Trustee of the Benton Institute for Broadband & Society, a private operating foundation with offices in Evanston, IL. Benton has made the case for a simple proposition: that communications policy – … Complete Bio >>

David Goldman
Director, Satellite Policy
David Goldman is the Director of Satellite Policy for SpaceX. Prior to joining SpaceX, he was the Chief Counsel for the Communication and Technology Subcommittee since January 2015. … Complete Bio >>

Jason Grey
Director of Utilities
City of Danville, VA
Jason joined the City’s broadband initiative in 2004 and is currently the Director of Utilities for the City of Danville, Virginia. … Complete Bio >>

Lisa Hogan, RN
Head of the CCMP Program
Frederick Memorial Hospital
Lisa Hogan is a 2017 & 2018 Telehealth Honors winner who operates the telehealth program at Frederick Memorial Hospital (FMH). … Complete Bio >>

Ron Holcomb
President & CEO
Tipmont REMC
Ron Holcomb is a 30-year veteran of the electric utility industry with extensive experience in power supply, advanced grid technologies, essential service operations, economic development and … Complete Bio >>

David Hoover
The Ferguson Group (TFG)
David Hoover is a Principal at The Ferguson Group (TFG), providing strategic counsel on technology and telecommunications policy issues. … Complete Bio >>

Joanne Hovis
CTC Technology & Energy
Hovis, an attorney with a background in communications and commercial litigation, directs CTC’s work in network business planning; market analysis; financial modeling, policy and strategy; … Complete Bio >>

Douglas Jarrett
Keller and Heckman
Douglas Jarrett represents associations, major corporations and entrepreneurs before the FCC on policy making, licensing and enforcement matters and leverages this expertise and … Complete Bio >>

Thomas Kamber, PhD
Executive Director
Older Adults Technology Services (OATS)
Tom Kamber is an award-winning social entrepreneur, educator and activist who has created new initiatives in aging, technology, affordable housing and the arts. … Complete Bio >>

Thomas Klobucar, PhD
Executive Director
Office of Rural Health (ORH)
Dr. Thomas F. Klobucar was named Executive Director in 2018. He leads the Office of Rural Health, managing a broad portfolio of partnerships with clinical program offices, … Complete Bio >>

Angie Kronenberg
Chief Advocate and General Counsel
Kronenberg joined INCOMPAS, the internet and competitive networks association, in 2013 and manages the association’s policy team and its work before the federal government. … Complete Bio >>

Kenneth Kuchno
Deputy Assistant Administrator for Policy and Outreach
USDA Rural Utilities Services
Mr. Kuchno is a graduate of the Pennsylvania State University. In 1980 he received a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering. … Complete Bio >>

Gerry Lawlor
Vice President
T-Mobile ISP
After many years in the financial industry, Gerry moved from NYC to Orcas Island. After a couple of years with terrible internet and cell coverage, he led on effort to deploy high-speed data and voice communications to San Juan County. … Complete Bio >>

Elizabeth Lindsey, MPA
Executive Director
Byte Back
Elizabeth Lindsey, MPA is the Executive Director of Byte Back, a DC-based nonprofit organization that Byte Back improves economic opportunity by providing computer training and … Complete Bio >>

Casey Logan, PE
President and CEO
Prince George Electric Cooperative
Casey was named President and CEO in April of 2019. Prior to that, Casey served as Vice President of Engineering for Prince George Electric Cooperative. … Complete Bio >>

Carol Mattey
Mattey Consulting, LLC
Carol Mattey is the Principal of Mattey Consulting LLC, based in the Washington, DC metro area. Mattey Consulting provides regulatory, strategic and public policy advisory services … Complete Bio >>

Alex Minard
Deputy Division Chief, Telecommunications Access Policy Division
Federal Communications Commission
Alex Minard leads the high-cost universal service team at the Federal Communications Commission as a Deputy Chief in the Telecommunications Access Policy Division of the Wireline Competition Bureau. … Complete Bio >>

Christopher Mitchell
Director, Community Broadband Networks
Institute for Local Self-Reliance
Christopher Mitchell is a leading national expert on community networks and internet access. At ILSR, he serves as policy director for Next Century Cities, … Complete Bio >>

Tim Moyer
Program Manager
US Department of Commerce, BroadbandUSA, NTIA
Tim Moyer is a Program Manager for the National Telecommunication and Information Administration’s BroadbandUSA program. … Complete Bio >>

Thien-Huong Nguyen, CPA
Manager, Executive Compensation
Thien-Huong Nguyen was a recipient of the NAHMA scholarship from 2009-2013, while a student at the University of Delaware. … Complete Bio >>

Brian O’Hara
Senior Director, Regulatory Issues, Broadband & Telecommunications
National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA)
O’Hara, who has more than 20 years of telecommunications and broadband industry experience, joined NRECA in October 2017, focusing on telecommunications and broadband issues. … Complete Bio >>

Dr. Haruo Okamura
Global Plan, Inc.
Dr. Haruo Okamura is a high-speed optical transmission and standards expert. He is currently the president of Global Plan Inc. and the developer of the “Okamura Model,” a low-cost optical cable solution … Complete Bio >>

Ted B. Osborn
Senior Vice President, Strategy and Regulatory Affairs
Nextlink Internet
In addition to his work at Nextlink, Osborn serves as managing director at WISP Partners, consulting on strategy development, public/private financings, mergers and acquisitions, and … Complete Bio >>

Nirali Patel
Wireline Advisor
Office of Chairman Ajit Pai, FCC
Ms. Patel advises Chairman Pai on wireline issues. Ms. Patel previously served as a Legal Advisor in the Office of Commissioner Brendan Carr, … Complete Bio >>

Jean Plymale
Broadband Project Manager
Center for Innovative Technology
Jean is the Center for Innovative Technology’s (CIT) Broadband Project Manager. With 20 years of experience in community engagement focused on raising awareness about broadband availability, … Complete Bio >>

Mel Poole
OCALA Fiber Network
Mel Poole is the Director of Ocala Fiber Network (OFN). He is a retired U.S. Air Force First Sergeant who served in the United States and abroad. … Complete Bio >>

Vickie Robinson
Director, Airband USA
Microsoft Airband Initiative
Vickie Robinson joined Microsoft in January 2018 after nearly two decades in the service of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in multiple leadership roles and … Complete Bio >>

Gail M. Roper
Director, National Initiatives
Knight Foundation
Gail Roper joined Knight Foundation in March 2019. As director of national initiatives, she supports the national portfolio with an emphasis on technology-enabled innovation … Complete Bio >>

Steven Rosenberg
Chief Data Officer
Federal Communications Commission
Steve Rosenberg is currently the Acting Chief Data and Analytics Officer for the Federal Communications Commission. … Complete Bio >>

Steve Ross
Broadband Communities Magazine
Ross is a long-time technology writer, a former full-time professor at Columbia University and the founding editor of Broadband Communities Magazine, … Complete Bio >>

Jon Sallet
Senior Fellow
Benton Institute for Broadband & Society
Jon’s work focuses on policies to preserve and protect internet openness, to advance competition more broadly, including through antitrust, and … Complete Bio >>

Gene Scott
General Manager OSP
Greenlight Community Broadband, Wilson, NC
Gene Scott is currently the General Manager OSP for Greenlight Community Broadband in Wilson, NC. Mr. Scott has served in this position for 12 years. … Complete Bio >>

Craig Settles
CJ Speaks
For more than 30 years, Settles’ workshops, consulting services and books have helped public, private and nonprofit organizations worldwide use technology to cut costs, improve business operations and increase revenue. … Complete Bio >>

Richard J. Sherwin
Spot On Networks, LLC
Sherwin has been involved in wireless communications and radio frequency transmission for the past 30 years. With a number of telecommunications veterans, … Complete Bio >>

Deborah Simpier
Deborah Simpier is the COO and organizer of the Althea network in rural Oregon, Clatskanie Co-op. … Complete Bio >>

Laura Spining
Broadband Infrastructure, NTIA
Laura Spining is Director of Broadband Infrastructure for the National Telecommunication and Information Administration’s (NTIA) BroadbandUSA program. … Complete Bio >>

Geoffrey Starks
Federal Communications Commission
Geoffrey Starks was nominated to serve as a Commissioner on the Federal Communications Commission by the President and was unanimously confirmed by the United States Senate on January 2, 2019. … Complete Bio >>

Sean Stokes
Baller Stokes & Lide, PC
Sean is a Principal of Baller Stokes & Lide, PC, a national communications law firm based in Washington, DC. His clients include, regional and state utility associations and municipal leagues, … Complete Bio >>

Darnell Sutton
President & CEO
Hollywall Development Company
Darnell Sutton is the Chairman and CEO of Hollywall Development Company, a subsidiary of Hollywall Entertainment, Inc. (HWDC). Darnell brings forth his many talents and vast experience as a veteran of music recording, … Complete Bio >>

Pierre Trudeau
President and CTO
Positron Access Solutions
Trudeau is a seasoned networking and technology executive and board member with more than 35 years of experience. Prior to joining Positron in 2013, he founded Colubris Networks, … Complete Bio >>

Daniel Turner
Founder & CEO
Daniel Turner is the cofounder of TRAXyL and has worked for the last 12 years as a project manager, technical lead, and systems engineer with telecommunications and fiber optic network installations. … Complete Bio >>

Nicol Turner-Lee
Fellow, Governance Studies
Center for Technology Innovation Brookings Institution
Turner-Lee came to Brookings from the Multicultural Media, Telecom and Internet Council, a national nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting and preserving equal opportunity and … Complete Bio >>

Dan Urban
Corbel Communications Industries, LLC.
Dan Urban has been on the forefront of Microtrenching for many years. He is well versed in all facets of the telecommunications industry as well as many others. … Complete Bio >>

Dr. Robert Wack
City Council President
Westminster, MD
Robert Wack served 16 years on the Westminster City Council, the last six as President, where he led the planning and construction of the Westminster Fiber Network; … Complete Bio >>

Joseph Wender
Senior Policy Advisor
Senator Markey (D-MA)
Joseph Wender currently serves as Senator Markey’s Senior Policy Advisor and handles a wide range of issues including telecommunications and privacy. … Complete Bio >>

Jase Wilson
Founder & Chairman
Jase Wilson is Founder & Chairman of Neighborly, the Intelligent Community Infrastructure Platform helping connect U.S. communities to the future. … Complete Bio >>

Justin Wilson
City of Alexandria, VA
With a commitment to ensuring every child’s opportunity at success, protecting Alexandria’s long-term fiscal health and investing in the infrastructure that improves our quality of life, … Complete Bio >>

Lisa R. Youngers
President & CEO
Fiber Broadband Association
Lisa R. Youngers is the President and CEO of the Fiber Broadband Association (FBA) – the only all-fiber trade association in the Americas. … Complete Bio >>

Scott Zimmer
Air Advantage
Scott Zimmer, along with his wife Dawn and their business partner Leroy A. Koglin, Jr. began Air Advantage, a Wireless Internet Service Provider (WISP) serving rural Michigan in July, 2002. … Complete Bio >>

An event that is committed to helping all communities maximize the economic benefits of ultra-fast broadband networks, bringing you experts presenting their findings on the new technologies, strategies and services aimed at getting all Americans connected to high-speed broadband.

Broadband Communities (BBC) is the leading source of information on digital and broadband technologies for buildings and communities. Our editorial aims to accelerate the deployment of Fiber-To-The-Home (FTTH) and Fiber-To-The-Premises (FTTP) while keeping readers up to date on the available solutions capable of serving their practical needs.

BBC offers in-depth news, expert insights, and practical know-how on the technical, business, financial, and legal aspects of outfitting properties and communities with broadband solutions. With a focus on residential buildings, developments, and municipalities, BBC helps the large-scale and wholesale buyers and users of broadband technologies, equipment, and services competitively distinguish their properties and communities in a rapidly-changing marketplace.