NTCA Recognizes Nine Member Companies As Certified Gig-Capable Providers

For Immediate Release
Contact: Hillary Crowder, 703-351-2086, hcrowder@ntca.org 

Arlington, Va. (August 26, 2015)—NTCA–The Rural Broadband Association, the premier association representing nearly 900 independent, community-based telecommunications companies that are leading innovation in rural and small-town America, today announced that nine NTCA members have been named Certified Gig-Capable Providers under a national program highlighting independent telecommunications providers delivering gigabit broadband speeds. 

The NTCA member companies that received certification are: NineStar Connect (Greenfield, Ind.), Wilkes Communications (Wilkesboro, N.C.), Polar Communications (Park River, N.D.), SkyLine Membership Corporation (West Jefferson, N.C.), Omnitel Communications (Nora Springs, Iowa), Premier Communications (Sioux Center, Iowa), Peoples Rural Telephone Cooperative (McKee, Ky.), West Wisconsin Telcom Cooperative (Downsville, Wis.) and Dickey Rural Networks (Ellendale, N.D.). 

As Certified Gig-Capable Providers, these companies join a national campaign spearheaded by NTCA to build awareness and industry recognition of community-based telecom providers that have built communications networks capable of delivering Internet speeds of up to 1 gigabit per second, which is 100 times faster than those currently available in many U.S. households. In addition to national recognition, certified providers also received tools to promote themselves as a Gig-Capable Provider in the communities they serve and will be recognized in NTCA media, on the NTCA website, and during association conferences and events, beginning with the NTCA 2015 Fall Conference in Boston, Mass. 

“I applaud each one of these companies for their commitment to delivering the Internet’s fastest speeds—an accomplishment worthy of much praise considering the unique and challenging circumstances small, community-based telecommunications providers operate under every day in serving some of our country’s most rural and remote communities,” said NTCA Chief Executive Officer Shirley Bloomfield. “By building a gigabit-capable network, these companies have not only overcome these challenges, but also shattered conventional benchmarks for broadband speed to enable cutting-edge technologies that drive innovation and promote economic development in their communities, regions and nationwide.” 

To achieve certification, telecommunications companies must show that gigabit technology is currently commercially available within 95% of one or more exchanges within their serving territory and that such service can be provided without new trenching or stringing new aerial facilities. This statement must be confirmed by a letter from an engineering firm or other independent source involved in the company’s network planning, deployment or operation. 

For more information about the NTCA Gig-Capable Provider certification program, visit www.ntca.org/gigcertified. 

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NTCA–The Rural Broadband Association is the premier association representing nearly 900 independent, community-based telecommunications companies that are leading innovation in rural and small-town America. NTCA advocates on behalf of its members in the legislative and regulatory arenas, and it provides training and development; publications and industry events; and an array of employee benefit programs. In an era of exploding technology, deregulation and marketplace competition, NTCA's members are leading the IP evolution for rural consumers, delivering technologies that make rural communities vibrant places in which to live and do business. Because of their efforts, rural America is fertile ground for innovation in economic development and commerce, education, health care, government services, security and smart energy use. Visit us at www.ntca.org.