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Fiber for Breakfast 2023 Week 16: Western Colorado Regions Elevate Broadband

Between 2018 and 2020, Northwest Colorado Council of Governments (NWCCOG) and Region 10 created open access middle mile transport networks to support unserved and underserved communities in NW and Western Colorado. These networks were funded initially by local investment and matching grants by the State of Colorado. These networks have become invaluable in expanding the availability of last mile broadband to rural residents, businesses, education, and community anchor institutions. In April 2022, they received additional grant funding from State of Colorado Department of Local Affairs to connect dispersed networks to serve more communities and deliver affordable, reliable, accessible middle mile broadband to more communities. Nate Walowitz, Regional Broadband Director at NWCCOG, will share how this elevates their ability to support last mile provider goals to deliver 100/20 Mbps and 100/100 Mbps service to more unserved rural communities.

Presenter Bio:

Nate Walowitz is an innovative telecommunications and technology program executive and serves as the Regional Broadband Program Director for the Northwest Colorado Council of Governments (NWCCOG). Since 2014, his technical advisory services to local governments has led to the deployment of broadband to unserved areas and bringing over $37M in state matching grant funds to NW Colorado community broadband projects. Most recently, NWCCOG was previously awarded a $1M matching grant to build out an open access, resilient middle mile network across 10 counties in NW Colorado. This funding been supplemented by an additional $5.5m in state grant funding to continue to the extension and interconnection of two existing publicly owned open access middle mile transport network for benefit of many Colorado communities west of Denver. Prior to NWCCOG, Nate spent years consulting to industry and governments providing innovation business solutions in IT, wireless deployment, terrestrial networks and applications.