Intel exec tapped to lead Colorado’s strategy to expand rural broadband

 

Tony Neal-Graves, the new executive director of Colorado's Broadband Office (Photo courtesy governor's office)

Tony Neal-Graves starts work on Wednesday, March 15, 2017, as the new executive director of Colorado’s Broadband Office, part of the Governor’s Office of Information Technology. (Photo courtesy Colorado governor’s office)

Gov. John Hickenlooper on Friday named Tony Neal-Graves, a former vice president of Intel Corporation, as executive director in charge of Colorado’s Broadband Office, the governor’s office announced.

Neal-Graves will be responsible for steering expanded availability of broadband internet capabilities by leveraging relationships with public and private entities in communities across the state, the governor’s office said.

“We are working tirelessly to make sure every county throughout the state has the tools needed for economic development — especially in rural areas, ” Hickenlooper said in a statement. “Tony’s leadership will help move the needle so that all Coloradans have improved access to broadband services sooner rather than later.”

According to state estimates, only 70 percent of rural Coloradans have access to broadband internet. The governor’s office intends to boost that figure to 85 percent by the end of next year while aiming for complete coverage by the year 2020.

Neal-Graves said he’s anxious to get to work.

“I’m honored to be joining Colorado in this effort,” he said in a statement. “There is a great broadband team in place, strong public-private partnerships and tremendous will to get the job done. I’m excited for this challenge.”

The Broadband Office is part of the Governor’s Office of Information Technology and will work with the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade and the Department of Local Affairs, among other state agencies.

Neal-Graves was vice president in the Internet of Things Group at Intel Corporation, where he worked for more than 15 years on a wide variety of projects. Before that, he spent two decades working for AT&T Bell Laboratories and Lucent Technologies.

He takes office on March 15.

ernest@coloradostatesman.com

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