Event Review – Broadband Convergence Convention
Event: Broadband Convergence Convention – TANE & TAM 2019
Date: September 10th- 12th, 2019
Location: Samoset Resort – Rockport, ME
Host Resource: https://www.mtug.org/summit/2019-summit
April Metivier, Chief Operating Officer
Gregg Klatsky, Director of Business Development
Wilbur Wolf, Lead Account Manager
Julian Oleaga, Junior Sales Associate
Angela Blackington, Office Manager (New Gloucester, ME)
The telecommunications leaders throughout northern New England & Canada gathered to host their annual meetings and kick off a two-day Broadband Convergence Convention. Over one hundred and forty registered attendees, speakers and staff enjoyed a welcome reception & exhibitor showcase Tuesday evening. Vendors in thirty booths displayed their colorful brochures, swag, electronics, and devices for attendees. As members flowed throughout the venue they were greeted and received updates on the newest information impacting the telecommunications community. The Independent Telephone Pioneer Association (ITPA) opened up their silent auction with several great products: Yeti cooler, local brewery baskets, Maine made products, platters celebrating fall and the cooler temperatures, antique phones, golf getaways, and more.
Following the opening meetings and welcome reception members were invited upstairs to the banquet room for the TANE Hall of Fame dinner honoring Laurie Osgood and sponsored by UniTel & Unity Foundation.
The General Session was opened by Scott Brooks with TDS Telecom and active TAM/TANE President; he took a moment to honor those lost 18 years ago when the attack on the World Trade Center, Pentagon, and site near Shanksville, PA occurred. A moment of silence in remembrance and honor to the 2, 977 people killed in the terror attacks. The National Anthem, Pledge of Allegiance, and invocation then opened up the day of broadband discussions:
- Electic Cooperatives & Broadband
- State Economic Review & Broadband Discussion
- What’s up in DC?
Where’s the money for broadband?
- Legislative Panel
- How do we expand and improve broadband?
- Broadband Panel with representatives from NH, VT, ME
A full day of panelist discussions, questions and answers, and observations of where the industry is moving with the expansion of broadband and governmental assistance left many attendees shaking their heads. A goal of reaching the most remote service areas and customers would continue to be the quest for those in attendance. The light chatter and conversation flowed over to the cocktail reception hosted by BerryDunn. A traditional lobster bake encouraged everyone to don a bib and get to crackin’ if they were going make the Wild West Casino Night. MOUNTAIN team members dressed for the occasion and hugged their chips close as they headed to the tables for some entertainment and fun. The ITPA silent auction ended and everyone was excited for their winnings after the jockeying for last minute bids left some folks disappointed not getting their signature down before time was called.
At the end of the night, a celebration amongst the telecommunication family had them enjoying a break from the day to day grind. Together they had raised over $1730.00 for the ITPA scholarships and charity organizations a winning hand for all to end the Wild West Casino Night.
The final morning kicked off with a wonderful breakfast before entering the general session. MOUNTAIN’s very own April Metivier & Gregg Klatsky introduced vendors and acknowledge their wealth of knowledge to be shared with everyone on a myriad of topics. The final two topics of the day were an update on the FirstNet ME-NH-VT project and Broadband Discussion – Private/Public Partnership. Closing comments were given, and door prizes were awarded before everything was packed up squared away until we could meet again another day as friends, family, and industry leaders.