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Fiber Broadband Association Locks in Light Talks, Keynotes, and More for Fiber Connect 2024 Main Stage

Fiber Broadband Association Locks in Light Talks, Keynotes, and More for Fiber Connect 2024 Main Stage

World’s largest fiber broadband event aligns Operator Light Talks, Keynotes, State Broadband Forum, and General Sessions with this year’s theme of accelerating our fiber future

WASHINGTON, D.C. – (July 11, 2024) – The Fiber Broadband Association today announced highlights and speakers that will be featured at Fiber Connect 2024–the largest fiber broadband event in the world–held July 28-31, in Nashville, Tenn. During the event’s standing-room only general sessions, the industry’s most dynamic leaders will explore Middle Mile Networks, Federal Broadband Policy, Innovation and Disruption, AI, and Deployment Challenges and Opportunities.

“Fiber Connect continues to grow every year due to its unique content. With the extensive agenda that is planned for 2024, there truly is something for everyone at Fiber Connect,” said Evann Freeman, EPB Vice President, Government & Community Relations and Fiber Broadband Association Conference Committee Chair. “This year’s theme, ‘Accelerating our Fiber Future,’ is really a testament to what we plan to accomplish now through 2030 as we gear up to utilize federal and private funding.”

Operator Light Talks will return to the Fiber Connect agenda, with each 18-minute, Ted Talk-style keynote highlighting how operators are enabling disruption within their markets, with customers, or with emerging applications and services. The five Operator Light Talks at Fiber Connect 2024 include:

  • Eric Lia, Senior Vice President, Verizon
  • Robert Bridgham, Executive Director, Eastern Shore of Virginia Broadband Authority
  • Kimberly McKinley, Chief Marketing Officer, UTOPIA Fiber, Vice Chair on FBA’s Board of Directors
  • Nicole Cottle, General Counsel and Director of Government Relations, UTOPIA Fiber
  • Robert Griffin, Tribal Broadband Director, Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma
  • Brian Bond, Chief Technology Officer, Brightspeed

The Fiber Broadband Association has also planned an all-star lineup of keynotes and general session panels that will explore more timely fiber broadband topics, including:

  • Alan Davidson, Assistant Secretary for Communications and Information at the U.S. Department of Commerce and NTIA Administrator, NTIA
  • Duncan Earl, Founder and Chief Technology Officer, Quibitekk
  • Teddy Bekele, Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer, Land O’ Lakes
  • “Changing the Value Creation Paradigm: Moving Forward Once the Digital Equity Gap is Closed” panel, featuring the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development, Ting Internet, TDS Telecom, Tombigbee Fiber, LLC, and Calix
  • “Middle Mile Networks: Defining the Road Ahead” panel, featuring, DZS, AFL, Diamond State Networks, Mid-Atlantic Broadband Communities Corporation and Centranet
  • “Applying AI to Network Operations: Strategies to Optimize Network Functions and Growth” panel, featuring IonQ, Ubiquity, Sumitomo Electric Lightwave, Hawaiian Telcom, and Adtran
  • Innovation and Disruption: Where Fiber Goes Next! Panel, featuring Nokia, Ciena, GFiber, Consolidated Communications, and Lumos

The State Broadband Summit takes place Wednesday, July 31, and is set to explore state and federal broadband policy, challenges and opportunities of last mile connectivity, real-world impacts of BEAD funding, and a discussion on Tribal Broadband. Highlights include:

  • Keynote from Andy Berke, Administrator, Rural Utilities Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture
  • “Federal Broadband Policy: How Fiber Fits Communities” panel, featuring C Spire, Lumen, Altice USA, and AT&T
  • Fireside Chat: Working Together Federal Interagency Permitting Opportunities and Solutions with Manisha Patel, Deputy Executive Director, The Permitting Council; and Jill Springer, Senior Policy Advisor for Permitting, Office of Internet Connectivity and Growth, NTIA
  • State Broadband Officer Roundtable: Update from the States, featuring representatives from Tennessee, Mississippi, South Carolina, and West Virginia
  • Fireside Chat: Tribal Broadband: The How, When, and Where with Margaret Gutierrez, Acting Division Chief, Tribal Broadband Connectivity and Nation-to-Nation Coordination Division, NTIA, OICG, U.S. Department of Commerce
  • “Deployment Challenges and Opportunities: Streamlining Last Mile Connectivity” panel, featuring Shentel (Glo Fiber), EPB, Cityside Fiber, GoNetspeed, and PLP

Additional new content at Fiber Connect 2024 includes an Overbuilder Toolkit workshop; Broadband Policy Symposium; Workforce Development, Retention, and Diversification workshop; a live Fiber for Breakfast; and the FBA Awards Luncheon. Other returning content includes pre-conference workshops, the Broadband Forum’s technology deep dives, breakout sessions, Fiber Meet Ups, a Proof of Concept showcase, and a sold-out expo hall.

To learn more about Fiber Connect 2024, visit the conference website here or subscribe to FBA’s Fiber Forward Weekly newsletter here to stay updated on conference news and more.


About the Fiber Broadband Association
The Fiber Broadband Association is the largest and only trade association that represents the complete fiber ecosystem of service providers, manufacturers, industry experts, and deployment specialists dedicated to the advancement of fiber broadband deployment and the pursuit of a world where communications are limitless, advancing quality of life and digital equity anywhere and everywhere. The Fiber Broadband Association helps providers, communities, and policy makers make informed decisions about how, where, and why to build better fiber broadband networks. Since 2001, these companies, organizations, and members have worked with communities and consumers in mind to build the critical infrastructure that provides the economic and societal benefits that only fiber can deliver. The Fiber Broadband Association is part of the Fibre Council Global Alliance, which is a platform of six global FTTH Councils in North America, LATAM, Europe, MEA, APAC, and South Africa. Learn more at

Press Contact:
Autumn Minnich
Connect2 Communications for the Fiber Broadband Association