Broadband Census for America Conference: About Our Experts

The Broadband Census for America Conference welcomes the nation’s foremost broadband policy-makers and experts on broadband data collection, distribution and mapping. Here are brief biographies on all the conference speakers and panelists as well as key resources to better inform those attending and

The Broadband Census for America Conference welcomes the nation’s foremost broadband policy-makers and experts on broadband data collection, distribution and mapping. Also see the official conference web page at

Conference Bios and Key Resources:

  • Art Brodsky, Public Knowledge
    • Art Brodsky has been the communications director of Public Knowledge since February 2004. He is a veteran of Washington, D.C. telecommunications and Internet journalism and public relations.Art worked for 16 years with Communications Daily, a leading trade publication. He covered Congress through the passage of the Telecommunications Act of 1996, the Digital Millennium Copyright Act and other major pieces of legislation. He also covered telephone regulation at the the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and at state regulatory commissions. In addition, he has covered the online industry since before there was an Internet, coming in just after videotext died but before the World Wide Web. Art was later an editor with Congressional Quarterly, with responsibilities for the daily and Web coverage of telecom, tech and other issues. Art’s freelance work has appeared in publications as diverse as the Washington Post, Huffington Post,, TPMcafe and the World Book encyclopedia. He was a commentator on the public radio program, Marketplace, and appeared on C-SPAN.On the PR front, Art worked as communications director for the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) and for the Washington, D.C. office of Qwest Communications International. He also does freelance PR work.Art graduated from the University of Maryland in December 1973 with High Honors and a degree in government and politics. He received a master’s degree in journalism from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University in June 1975. He and his wife, Liz, live in Olney, MD. They have two daughters.
    • Resources:
      1. The Public Knowledge Policy Blog: Art and other PK analysts examine issues in telecom and media policy.
  • Jeffrey Campbell, Cisco Systems
    • Jeffrey A. Campbell is Senior Director, Technology and Trade Policy of Global Policy and Government Affairs for Cisco Systems, Inc., the global leader for networking for the Internet. Since 2001, he has been responsible for developing and implementing Cisco’s public policy agenda with respect to telecommunications, trade, security and technology issues. In addition to his expertise in telecommunications regulation, Mr. Campbell has been involved in public policy with respect to intellectual property law, Internet regulation, international trade and information technology regulation.Mr. Campbell is a member of the Board of Directors of the California Emerging Technologies Fund, the Family Online Safety Institute, and the Voice on the Net Coalition.Prior to this position at Cisco, Mr. Campbell headed the Washington government affairs office of Compaq Computer. Mr. Campbell began his career as a telecommunications regulatory attorney with the Washington, D.C. office of Squire, Sanders & Dempsey.Mr. Campbell received his B.A. in History from Yale University and his J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center.
  • Rachelle Chong, California Public Utilities Commission
    • Commissioner Rachelle Chong began her career as a communications attorney practicing before both the FCC and the California PUC with private law firms. In 1994, President Clinton appointed her to the Federal Communications Commission, where she served until 1997. During her tenure at the FCC, the FCC implemented the Telecommunications Act of 1996, finalized digital television rules, and worked on the early wireless auctions. Commissioner Chong served on the FCC-NARUC Joint Board on Universal Service, which implemented the first E Rate programs. After the FCC, the Commissioner returned to law firm practice and then became General Counsel/VP Government Affairs for a Silicon Valley Internet-telephony start up. She later became an entrepreneur, opening a retail jewelry store and an ecommerce site. In 2006, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger appointed her to the California Public Utilities Commission. She has led communications reform there including significant work involving consumer affairs and broadband initiatives. She served on the California Broadband Task Force, and currently serves on the FCC-NARUC Joint Conference on Advanced Service. She is a graduate of UC Berkeley and UC Hastings College of the Law.
  • Eamonn Confrey, Embassy of Ireland, Washington, DC
    • Eamonn Confrey has been First Secretary, Information & Communications Policy at the Embassy of Ireland, Washington D.C. since October 2006. He is on secondment from the Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources in Ireland.Eamonn’s primary role is the provision of strategic analysis on ICT and Science & Technology policy developments in North America. He also chairs the Telecoms Attachés Group, an informal network of Washington telecoms diplomats.Prior to taking up his appointment in Washington, he worked in the Communications Division at the Department of Communications in Dublin. While there, his main role was to manage public investment in ICT infrastructure projects through the Regional Broadband Programme and to assist in the promotion of broadband connectivity and analysing regional connectivity issues in Ireland.He holds a B.A. (Hons) in History & Politics and a Masters degree in European Studies from University College Dublin. He also has a Higher Diploma in Information Technology from the National University of Ireland, Maynooth.
    • Resources:
      1. Broadband Information from Ireland’s Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources: This site publishes comprehensive information on every broadband service provider in Ireland.
  • Kenneth Flamm, University of Texas at Austin
    • Dr. Kenneth Flamm is Professor and Dean Rusk Chair in International Affairs at the LBJ School of Public Affairs at UT-Austin. He is currently vice-chair of the National Research Council’s Panel on Comparative Innovation Policy, and is a member of its Science, Technology, and Economic Policy Board, its Committee on Assessing the Need for a Defense Stockpile, and its assessment panel on the Small Business Innovation Research Program. He also served recently on the NRC’s Committee on the Future of Supercomputing, and its Steering Group on Measuring and Sustaining the New Economy. He has served as member and Chair of the NATO Science Committee’s Panel for Science and Technology Policy and Organization, and as a member of the Federal Networking Council Advisory Committee, the OECD’s Expert Working Party on High Performance Computers and Communications, various advisory committees and study groups of the National Science Foundation, the Council on Foreign Relations, the Defense Science Board, and the U.S. Congress’ Office of Technology Assessment, and as a consultant to government agencies, international organizations, andd private corporations.Dr. Flamm is the author of numerous articles and books on the dynamics of international competition in high technology industries, and studies of the computer, semiconductor, and telecommunications industries, including his recent article written in conjunction with the Pew Internet and American Life Project, “Measuring Broadband: Improving Communications Policymaking through Better Data Collection.”He is a 1973 honors graduate of Stanford University and received a Ph.D. in economics from M.I.T. in 1979.
    • Resouces:
  • Debbie Goldman, Communications Workers of America
    • Debbie Goldman has worked for the past 16 years as a Research Economist with the Communications Workers of America where she is responsible for regulatory affairs and telecommunications policy. She currently coordinates the union’s Speed Matters campaign promoting affordable high-speed Internet for America.The Communications Workers of America is the union for the Information Age, representing 700,000 workers in communications, media, airlines, manufacturing, and public service.Ms. Goldman has advocated before the Federal Communications Commission, the U.S. Department of Justice, state regulatory commissions, and the U.S. Congress on a broad range of telecom policy issues, including broadband policy, media ownership, universal service, and mergers and acquisitions.Ms. Goldman served as President of the Alliance for Public Technology, a coalition of individuals and organizations supporting universal affordable access to broadband technology.Ms. Goldman holds Masters degrees in History (University of Maryland), Public Policy (University of Maryland) and Education (Stanford University). She earned her B.A. Magna Cum Laude from Radcliffe College (Harvard University) in 1973, majoring in History.
    • Resources:
      1. Report on Internet Speeds in All 50 States [PDF]: Research conducted by Consumer Workers of America through (2008)
      2. Speed Matters: Affordable High Speed Internet for All [PDF], a Communication Workers of America Policy Paper (2006).
      3. State Broadband Initiatives: Communication Workers of America survey of state broadband initiatives.
  • Larry Landis, Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission
    • Landis, a Republican, was appointed to the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission by the late Governor Frank O’Bannon (D-IN) in December, 2002, joining the Commission in January 2003 to fill an unexpired term. In July of 2004, he was reappointed to a full four-year term by former Governor Joe Kernan (D-IN)., and to a second full four-year term by Governor Mitch Daniels (R-IN) in December, 2007.Landis has served the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC) in a variety of telecommunications-related roles. He was named to the Telecommunications Committee in mid-2003, and was a member of NARUC’s Intercarrier Compensation Task Force from its inception, assuming the Vice Chair role three years ago. He was active in the Legislative Task Force of NARUC which developed a major position paper on telecommunications law reform entitled “Federalism and Telecom,” which advocates a realignment of federal and state regulatory roles by areas of core competency rather than traditional geographic/jurisdictional lines.In January of 2005, Landis was named to the Federal-State Joint Conference on Advanced Telecommunications Services, of which he is now State Chair, by former FCC Chairman Michael Powell. In November of 2005 he was nominated by NARUC and appointed to the Federal-State Joint Board on Universal Service by the current FCC Chairman, Kevin Martin. In May of 2008, Commissioner Landis was appointed to the NARUC Board of Directors.Landis is a cum laude graduate of Wabash College with a double major in political science and economics and has done graduate work at the University of North Carolina/Chapel Hill and at Indiana University.
  • Dr. William Lehr, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
    • William Lehr is an economist and researcher in the Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), where he helps direct the Communications Futures Program (CFP). Dr. Lehr’s research focuses on the economic and policy implications of broadband Internet access, next generation Internet architecture, and radio spectrum management reform. In addition to his academic work, Dr. Lehr provides business strategy and litigation consulting services to public and private sector clients in the US and abroad. Dr. Lehr holds a PhD in Economics from Stanford and an MBA in Finance from the Wharton School, and MSE, BA, and BS degrees from the University of Pennsylvania.
    • Resources:
      1. Research on Broadband’s Economic Impact: Dr. Lehr has written extensively over the last decade on Broadband’s impact on GDP, employment, productivity, and other metrics.
  • Mark McElroy, Connected Nation
    • Mark McElroy is the Chief Operating Officer and Senior Vice President, Communications. Mark brings with him more than twenty years of experience in communications for both nonprofit and for profit organizations as well as a wide variety of professional roles and experiences. Mark has an earned PhD in organizational behavior, group learning, and philosophy. This, coupled with a bachelor’s degree in the sciences, has prepared him to contribute to a variety of settings. Mark has served as a vocational minister, managed a large cattle operation, produced and marketed grain, served as adjunct faculty for a graduate school, established a consulting practice, engineered curricular/educational materials, and authored a variety of articles in multiple fields for both general and professional audiences. He has written speeches, contributed to research, and edited books.
    • Resources:
  • James McConnaughey, NTIA
    • James McConnaughey serves as Chief Economist, National Telecommunications & Information Administration’s (NTIA) Office of Policy Analysis and Development, at the US Department of Commerce. Prior to NTIA (where he also was Senior Economist), he was Research Manager at Bethesda Research Institute and Senior Economist at the Federal Communications Commission. Mr. McConnaughey has worked on a variety of issues related to regulatory reform, competition, and universal service. In recent years, he has focused particularly on issues related to Internet access and usage, including broadband, and universal service. He led the teams that developed the six Commerce Department Internet and broadband studies, most recently A NATION ONLINE: ENTERING THE BROADBAND AGE (2004). McConnaughey earned a B.S. (with high honors) and an M.A. in economics from the University of Maryland and the George Washington University, respectively, and an M.P.A. (with high honors) as Robert Seamans Fellow for Technology & Public Policy and Lucius Littauer Scholar at Harvard University.
  • Jane Smith Patterson, e-NC Authority
    • Jane’s career has concentrated on the areas of information technology infrastructure and its impact on operations of government, industry and education. She has consulted with more than 20 countries worldwide and 38 states relating to the design and operation of information networks. She was the major visionary and leader in the development and implementation of the North Carolina Information Highway (NCIH), the first switched broadband ATM-Sonet deployment in the world. NCIH was a 1996 Global Information Infrastructure Awards Finalist. Jane chaired the Mega Project on Applications and served as a member of the U.S. National Information Infrastructure Advisory Council, appointed by both President Bill Clinton and Vice-President Al Gore.She was recognized in 1995 as one of the top women in computing in the United States. Jane was selected by the National Academy of Public Administration and the Alliance for Redesigning Government to receive its Public Innovator Award for 1997 for her work in advancing the use of information technology in redesigning the delivery of government services and the operations of government. In 1983, Jane was named a Distinguished Alumnus of UNC-Chapel Hill and became the first woman to deliver the main address at University Day in the history of the University. Jane is a Fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration. Jane has also focused on the issue of regional innovation and currently serves on the Advisory Council on Regional Innovation of the U.S. Council on Competitiveness and the board of Regional Technology Strategies. The e-NC Authority program she directs won an Innovator Award from the Southern Growth Policies Board in 2006 and a 2007 Techie Award from the national Nonprofit Technology Network.

      Jane Patterson has completed educational programs at UNC-Chapel Hill, Harvard University and N.C. State University. She is a strong subscriber to the practice of life-long learning and is always taking new courses of study. She has published articles and chapters of books on information infrastructure policy and applications in Japan, England, Europe and the United States.

    • Resources:
  • Jon Peha, Carnegie Mellon University
    • Jon M. Peha is incoming Chief Technologist at the Federal Communications Commission, and Professor of Electrical Engineering and Public Policy at Carnegie Mellon University. He consults for industry and government agencies around the world. Dr. Peha has addressed telecom and e-commerce issues on legislative staff in the US Congress, and helped launch a US Government interagency program to assist developing countries with information infrastructure. He has also served as Chief Technical Officer of three high-tech start-ups, and as a member of technical staff at SRI International, AT&T Bell Laboratories, and Microsoft. He holds a Ph.D. in electrical engineering from Stanford University.
    • Resources:
  • Jean Plymale, Virginia Tech eCorridors Program
    • Jean has 30 years of experience working in diverse areas of information technology. In her current position with Virginia Tech’s eCorridors program, Jean works closely with community, state and public sector entities to facilitate the understanding, acquisition and deployment of telecommunications infrastructure in underserved regions. Prior to joining the eCorridors program Jean worked at the Virginia Tech Computing Center as a Senior System Engineer where she managed UNIX and mainframe systems and applications. Ms. Plymale has a BA, MA and an advanced certificate in politics and policy of science and technology from Virginia Tech.
    • Resources:
      1. Virginia Tech’s eCorridors Hompage: A program designed to facilitate and promote the ability for every person, organization, and community in Virginia and beyond to have the capability, at a reasonable cost, to produce and access high volume information and services in the networked world.
  • Jim Puzzanghera, Los Angeles Times
    • Jim Puzzanghera covers tech and media policy from Washington, D.C.He joined the Times in 2006 from the San Jose Mercury News, where he spent eight years as the paper’s Washington bureau chief. Before that, he worked for the Mercury News in Silicon Valley during the dawn of the boom, when homes and lunches in Palo Alto were still somewhat affordable.He lives in Virginia with his wife and two boys, who, when he’s not forcing them to play outside, constantly teach him new things about the Web and video games.
    • Resources:
      1. “US in Slow Lane on Net,” Los Angeles Times, November 28, 2007: Jim’s article on broadband policy, data and mapping.
  • Brenda Van Gelder, Virginia Tech University
    • During her 20 years of employment with the University, Ms. van Gelder has participated as a member of a number of national working groups focused on broadband policy issues, and has directed a number of special research efforts focused on policy and regulatory issues associated with advanced telecommunications networks. Ms. van Gelder has made numerous presentations to key legislators, FCC officials, and community leaders regarding the policy issues associated with advanced network infrastructure leveraging various technologies. She has served on multi-university projects to assess resiliency and vulnerabilities of critical infrastructure for regions of Virginia in the context of disaster recovery or emergencies. Her most recent activities involve policy and implementation issues related to the convergence of physical security and logical security, as well as public safety initiatives involving information technologies at Virginia Tech. Ms. van Gelder has a Masters degree from Virginia Tech in Marketing/Business Administration.
    • Resources:
      1. eCorridors’ Community Broadband Map: An interactive national map of consumer-reported broadband service.
      2. eCorridors’ Maps and Research on Broadband Service in Virginia: Utilizing consumer-generated data, Virginia Tech’s eCorridors program has produced a number of maps analyzing broadband service in the state.
      3. eCorridors’ Summary Report: Includes an executive summary of the organization’s broadband data analysis and a link to the full report.
  • Carol Wilson, Telephony Online
    • Carol Wilson is Editor-in-Chief of Telephony magazine. She returned to Telephony in 2004 as editor-at-large. She has been covering the telecommunications industry for the past 20 years. Over that period of time, she has been a founding editor of two magazines–Inter@ctive Week and The Net Economy–as well as a news and information Web site, Broadband Edge. Carol began her telecom career as news editor at Telephony in 1985, becoming Editor three years later.

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