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The Fiber Broadband Association (FBA) is the largest and only trade association in the Americas dedicated to the pursuit of all- fiber-optic network infrastructure to the home, to the business and to everywhere. The Fiber Broadband Association helps providers make informed decisions about how, where, and why to build better broadband networks with fiber optics while working with its members to lead the organization forward, collaborate with industry allies and propel the deployment of fiber networks. Their weekly webcast is titled “Fiber for Breakfast” so be sure and tune in!

“Broadband usage metrics from 2020 have been staggering, and the projection of increase in usage over the next decade only climbs higher. I am thrilled to welcome new members to the core team, as they will be instrumental in building the best education, tools and opportunities to enable the industry to best support this broadband boom,” said Gary Bolton, FBA President and CEO. “These new team members have already immersed themselves in the Fiber Broadband Association ecosystem and are ready to engage and provide the right expertise to support informed decisions in building better broadband with fiber.”    

Telecom Review recently visited with Gary Bolton and Deborah Kish in order to give the industry an overview of the Association

The Association represents the full eco-system from service providers to the supply side of the business, Gary told us.

One of the responsibilities of the FBA is to make sure the industry needs are represented at the Legislative/ Government levels in order to build proper industry policy and funding.

“The Fiber Broadband Association (FBA) applauds the Biden Administration’s American Jobs Plan to include $100B in broadband infrastructure funding to connect every American to high-speed broadband over the next 8 years. Our members have seen firsthand the significant economic impact, new jobs and improved quality of life that fiber broadband brings to the communities where deployed. Fiber broadband not only provides the fastest possible Internet speeds while futureproofing the network, but also encourages adoption by reducing the cost of Internet service long term.”

  • A recent study by FBA member EPB looked into the role fiber played in the economic growth of one Tennessee county. From the study, it was revealed that the fiber optic infrastructure directly supported the creation and retention of 9,516 jobs in the community since 2011. This equates to about 40% of all jobs created during the study period. That same study identified the role that fiber played as businesses faced the transition from in-person to remote work as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The study showed that more jobs in the community were able to remain in place, citing a noticeably lower unemployment rate compared to national averages.
  • A second study by NTCA, Purdue University and the Center for Regional Development in 2019 noted how small, rural communications providers in the United States contributed to more than 77,000 jobs and supported more than $10 billion in economic activities across a wide range of industries.

There is no doubt that fiber drives economic development and job growth, and the Fiber Broadband Association is eager to see this bill pass and these funds put to work on fiber deployment.

FBA is doing its part through its Education and Certifications program. The program currently includes certifications for Service Providers with 70% or more fiber networks to households, Fiber to the Home Professional for individuals that can demonstrate knowledge and familiarity with FTTH architecture, network design, deployment technology and operational skills, and Fiber to the x Outside Plant Design. FBA is continuing to expand its workforce development program for more specialized roles such as a Certified Fiber Optic Technician, which is the equivalent to a PhD. The program is designed to ensure that these jobs can be filled by highly qualified individuals with the necessary skills to deploy fiber across the nation.

The Fiber Broadband Association (FBA) will hold its annual Fiber Connect conference July 25-28, at the Gaylord Opryland Resort & Convention Center in Nashville, Tennessee. With more than 85% of RDOF funding dedicated to Gigabit broadband networks, it is a critical time for the fiber investment cycle and in-person conference attendees will hear from leading experts, policy makers, regulators, operators, OEMs, and engineering firms as they discuss the challenges and opportunities of today’s market.

“It is important for the fiber ecosystem to come together to collaborate on new technologies, opportunities for business development, and advance investment in fiber,” said Gary Bolton, FBA’s President and CEO. “We are celebrating the 20th anniversary of the Fiber Broadband Association and look forward to highlighting the innovation and fiber industry advancements that have led to the creation of jobs, increased economic possibilities, and the positive and long-lasting impact on communities of all sizes across North America.”

 The demand for fiber broadband speeds and capacity is at an all-time high. Driven in part by the growth in work-from-home, remote learning and the video-based communications that keep friends and family connected, network operators and communications service providers are upgrading internet connectivity with fiber optic technology at a rapid pace. Fiber Connect 2021 offers a live, immersive educational experience for all stakeholders in the broadband industry, including new information, investment, and deployment methodology to deliver high-speed, low-latency broadband communications to homes, businesses, government, and schools.

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