Broadband Breakfast on April 5, 2023 – State Digital Equity Plans

Hear state broadband leaders talk about how they are approaching the digital equity planning process.

Broadband Breakfast on April 5, 2023 – State Digital Equity Plans

See Digital Equity Planning Process Should Include Local Communities, Says NTIA Official, Broadband Breakfast, April 6, 2023

Our Broadband Breakfast Live Online events take place on Wednesday at 12 Noon ET. Watch the event on Broadband Breakfast, or REGISTER HERE to join the conversation.

Wednesday, April 5, 2023, 12 Noon ET – State Digital Equity Plans

The Digital Equity Act, part of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act of 2021, provides $2.75 billion for three grant programs aiming to promote digital equity. The $60 million State Planning Program, $1.44 billion State Capacity Program and $1.25 Competitive Program will fund a variety of digital equity projects across the country, from planning to implementation. In this session of Broadband Breakfast Live Online, state broadband leaders will talk about how their states are approaching the digital equity planning process and what they hope to accomplish with the federal funding.


  • Angela Thi Bennett, Digital Equity Director, NTIA
  • Susan Corbett, Executive Director, National Digital Equity Center
  • Amy Huffman, Policy Director, National Digital Inclusion Alliance
  • David Keyes, Digital Equity Advisor, City of Seattle
  • Deborah Lathen, President, Lathen Consulting LLC
  • Drew Clark (moderator), Editor and Publisher, Broadband Breakfast

Panelist resources

Angela Thi Bennett serves as the first-ever digital equity director at the National Telecommunications and Information Administration within the U.S. Department of Commerce, where she directs the allocation of $2.75 billion from the Digital Equity Act and helps develop guidelines for states to equitably use these funds. Her vast community and public sector experience include leading East Cleveland’s department of community and economic development, serving as superintendent of a community school in Cleveland and serving on the Ohio State Board of Education. In her previous work at a community-based internet service provider, she was instrumental in growing the customer base and helping over 1,500 individuals benefit from affordable digital access during the height of the pandemic.

Susan Corbett founded the National Digital Equity Center in 2017, collaborating with local and global change makers, relentlessly driving disruptive strategies to close the digital divide in Maine and across the United States. She serves as the Executive Director, and is a preeminent authority and advocate for digital equity and digital inclusion. She is currently collaborating with the State of Maine to create their statewide Digital Equity and Digital Inclusion Plan.

Amy Huffman serves as policy director at National Digital Inclusion Alliance (NDIA). She is a public servant, systems thinker, innovative policy expert, and a storyteller with a passion for digital equity that spans more than 10 years. Amy was the first digital inclusion and policy manager in the State of North Carolina, and she has since grown as a leader with a national portfolio, including advocating for, influencing, and educating stakeholders about the $2.75-billion Digital Equity Act.

David Keyes works at the intersection of information and communications technologies, race and social justice, and community capacity building. He has over 25 years experience guiding the City of Seattle’s digital equity strategic planning, advocacy, programs and evaluation. He was the first community technology planner in the country and developed the City’s Technology Access and Adoption Indicators research. In 2016, he received the inaugural Charles Benton Digital Equity Champion Award from the National Digital Inclusion Alliance and the Benton Foundation.

Deborah Lathen is an attorney and policymaker who has been working on digital equity issues for over three decades. She was appointed to a Senior Executive position in the Clinton Administration as Chief of the Cable Services Bureau, Federal Communications Commission, where she led a bureau of 112 lawyers, economists, accountants, engineers and economists in setting policies and crafting regulations covering cable, satellite TV, internet and equipment providers. In 2001, she founded Lathen Consulting, LLC where she advises clients on telecommunications regulatory and policy matters.

Drew Clark (moderator) is CEO of Breakfast Media LLC. He has led the Broadband Breakfast community since 2008. An early proponent of better broadband, better lives, he initially founded the Broadband Census crowdsourcing campaign for broadband data. As Editor and Publisher, Clark presides over the leading media company advocating for higher-capacity internet everywhere through topical, timely and intelligent coverage. Clark also served as head of the Partnership for a Connected Illinois, a state broadband initiative.

Graphic from Adobe Stock used with permission

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