About Our Members
The future of rural America is directly tied to the quality of its telecommunications capability. In an era of exploding technology, deregulation, and marketplace competition, NTCA's goal is to ensure that rural Americans receive telecommunications services on a par with those available to urban residents -- and at reasonable cost.
NTCA members deliver high-quality communications services in the most sparsely populated, highest-cost rural areas of the country. As carriers that serve areas long ago left behind by larger companies, NTCA members provide reliable broadband, voice and data communications services in some of the hardest-to-serve corners of the United States in the face of substantial economic challenges.
America's independent telephone systems serve more than 40% of the nation’s land mass and less than 5% of the nation’s telecom subscribers. On average, NTCA member companies' customer density is approximately seven subscribers per square mile. By contrast, larger telecommunications companies, on average, serve 130 customers per square mile.
NTCA's members are quite diverse, varying tremendously in size and offerings. Responding to consumer demand, they have evolved beyond “telephone companies” to become one-stop tech service providers, offering everything from video to wireless services, home security, computer repair and data storage. NTCA members often partner with local schools, hospitals and other civic entities to provide affordable, high-quality services that improve the lives of rural residents.
Customer bases of NTCA members range from less than 100 subscribers to more than 50,000. The smallest member employs a staff of two, and the largest more than 400. Annual operating revenues range from less than $100,000 to more than $40 million.
NTCA's membership is divided into six geographic regions, each of which elects two representative to sit on the NTCA Board of Directors that governs the association. The board chooses a president from among the 12 national directors. Twelve committees set association policy in specific areas. Shirley Bloomfield serves as NTCA's chief executive officer. NTCA has 70 employees at its Arlington, Va., headquarters and 86 employees at its benefits service center in Asheville, N.C., in addition to eight field representatives throughout the country.