Skip to Main Content
This is the staging/test copy of our website. Visit our live website at
Image: Building on Broadband: Inspiring Progress

Wednesday, October 13

8:30 am    Coffee and Conversation

9:00         Welcome and Tone Setting
Christopher Mitchell, Director, Community Broadband Networks initiative, Institute for Local Self-Reliance, Minneapolis, MN
Bernadine Joselyn, Director of Public Policy & Engagement, Blandin Foundation
Session Notes and Video

9:20          For the Good of the Whole – Introductions

9:40          Getting it Done: Advocacy and Action
A series of fast-moving presentations about efforts across Minnesota to improve access and adoption and advocate for broadband investment. Presentation and Discussion. Moderated by Bernadine Joselyn, Blandin Foundation
Session Notes and Video

  • Minnesota Broadband: Land of Ten Thousand Connectivity Solutions
    Ry Marcattilio-McCracken, Senior Researcher, Community Broadband Networks initiative, Institute for Local Self-Reliance, Mankato, MN
  • Workforce Movers in Rural Minnesota
    Benjamin Winchester, Rural Sociology Educator, University of Minnesota Extension, St. Cloud, MN
  • Surveys, Data and Stories to Inform Policy and Investment
    Ann Treacy, Treacy Information Services, St. Paul, MN with Ben Winchester

  • Partnership for ConnectedMN: A Community-Responsive, Public-Private Partnership
    Anne Hoyt Taff, Associate Vice President of Community Impact, Saint Paul & Minnesota Foundation
    Hussein Farah, Founder and Executive Director, New Visions Foundation, St. Paul, MN

10:25          Discussion

10:40          So What? Regional Gatherings Report Out: How can rural Minnesota communities realize their greatest broadband opportunities?
A diverse panel of stakeholders responds to a summary of participant input heard at eight regional broadband gatherings held across the state in September and October, and offers advice to regions on how to make progress. Moderated by Bill Coleman, Community Technology Advisors
Session Notes and Video

  • Tarryl Clark, Commissioner, Stearns County
  • Angie Dickison, Executive Director, MN DEED Office of Broadband Development
  • Brian Krambeer, President/CEO, MiEnergy Cooperative
  • Benya Kraus, Executive Director, Lead for Minnesota
  • Bree Maki, Broadband and Regional Field Rep., Office of Senator Tina Smith
  • David Schornack, Director of Business Development and Sales, Arvig
  • Jay Trusty, Executive Director, Southwest Regional Development Commission

11:35           Break

11:45           Broadband Project Development 101
A high level tech overview covering strengths/weaknesses of the various last mile technologies, both wired and wireless, followed by a panel discussion on broadband projects and partnerships. Moderated by Bill Coleman, Community Technology Advisors
Session Notes and Video

  • Joe Buttweiler, Director of Business Development, CTC
  • Mark Mrla, Director, Strategy Operations, Finley Engineering
  • Whitney Ridlon, Community Development Rep., MN Dept of Iron Range Resources and Rehabilitation
  • Barbara Dröher Kline, Le Sueur County Broadband
  • Justin Forde, Senior Director of Government Relations, Midco
  • Kyle Moorhead, Founder, Hometown Fiber

1:00 pm      Adjourn

Annual Conference 2021
arrow icon pointing up Back to Top