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Iowa’s Governor Honored with the Broadband Visionary Award

Des Moines, IA (April 17, 2017) – Connected Nation (CN) and Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds honored Governor Terry Branstad on Monday, April 17, with the Connected Nation Broadband Visionary Award. Governor Branstad was presented the award in a small, afternoon ceremony at the state capitol in Des Moines. 

Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai also sent a letter congratulating the governor on the award, writing “as the Governor of a largely rural state, you have harnessed technology and telecommunications in a remarkable manner. Thank you for your dedication to empowering Iowans through connectivity.  Your forward-thinking approach has inspired many throughout our country.”

(pictured left to right: Grant Seiffert, CN Board of Director member (L), Gov. Branstad, and Dave Daack, Director of Connect Iowa) Governor Branstad  has a long history of working to bring broadband (high-speed Internet) accessibility to all Iowans, dating back to his first years as Governor where he was among the first in the nation to establish a state broadband communications network.  Holding fast to the ideal that broadband can be a force of great socio-economic progress in the state, Branstad has stated “The communities that will thrive in this new economy are those which take every opportunity to organize and plan to continually improve their technological capabilities.”

In recent years, he is credited with empaneling the 2013 State Advisory Broadband Committee, launching the “Connect Every Iowan” initiative with Connect Iowa, a public-private partnership to make Iowa the “Most Connected State in the Midwest”, and for passing one the nation’s first state broadband bills in 2015.  For his efforts, Iowa has also been recognized as a national leader in organizing for a statewide, interoperable first-responders network.  

Lieutenant Governor Reynolds remarked, “Like the Governor, I believe Iowa’s future – our education, economic growth, public safety, and more – are tied directly to technology and access to broadband.  If we are to continue to grow, we must be connected and I will continue to work toward bringing access to all Iowa families, businesses, farmers and more – so, together, we will excel.”

Connected Nation CEO, Tom Ferree commented, “Today we celebrate the vision and strong leadership that Governor Branstad has provided in the pursuit of a more connected Iowa.  We look forward to supporting Lt. Governor Reynolds as she builds on this foundation and continues the work necessary to ensure that every Iowan has the opportunity to participate and excel in the digital economy.”

Pictured in the above (left to right): Grant Seiffert, Connected Nation Board of Directors member, Gov. Branstad, and Dave Daack, Director of Connect Iowa.

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About Connected Nation: Connected Nation is a leading technology organization committed to bringing affordable high-speed Internet and broadband-enabled resources to all Americans so no one is left on the wrong side of the “Digital Divide.”

Connected Nation works with consumers, local community leaders, states, technology providers, and foundations to develop and implement technology expansion programs with core competencies centered on a mission to improve digital inclusion for people and places previously underserved or overlooked. For more information, please visit: www.connectednation.org/. Follow Connected Nation on Facebook and Twitter.