Out of the Box Thinking – How Political Power Drives a Path to Digital Equity

August 7 – 9:00 am to 9:45 am

As more communities devise their broadband solutions, leveraging the upcoming funding from the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, what makes for successful efforts responsive to community needs? What factors contribute to successes and failures? This session will cover the building and wielding political power, leveraging the focus of ‘centers of influence’ towards digital equity, and approaching and navigating broadband expansion efforts from a ‘Community Centric’ perspective.

Knowing and navigating the political power landscape is a powerful tool to ensure your community looks back on IIJA, BEAD, and DEA with the knowledge that you have done everything possible to execute this funding opportunity to the best of your abilities. This session will also highlight how you can leverage your work to bring economies of scale to other government units, ensuring your effort to identify community-centric partners works to benefit additional governmental units, schools, libraries, healthcare organizations, and more.

This session highlights an NGO, County Government, and private sector partnership that genuinely highlights how strong vision and leveraging political power drive results you can utilize as a force multiplier to benefit many statewide.

Kris Tobbe, Chief Information Officer, Livingston County


Charlotte Bewersdorff

Merit Network: Vice President for Community Engagement

Amanda Borrett

Vivacity Infrastructure Group: Sales Director