Solidarity to Strengthen Competitors Voice in the Face of More Changes

2005 will bring a number of changes to the telecommunications industry, from an anticipated rewrite of the Telecom Act and implementation of the FCCs Triennial Review Remand Order, to more widespread deployment of VoIP and other new technologies, and an evolution in the type of providers delivering services to consumers and businesses.

CompTel/ASCENT leaders at Mondays opening session discussed how theyre preparing the association for this challenging year ahead.

One major step is the recent announcement of the merger of CompTel/ASCENT and the Association for Local Telecommunications Services (ALTS). The two trade associations, which both represent competitive telecommunications service providers, will complete the merger on March 1.

Together, we feel we are better positioned to rise above the challenges facing us, by working together in solidarity to ensure that any legislation or regulatory decision takes into serious consideration the competitive telecom providers points of view, says H. Russell Frisby Jr., CompTel/ASCENTs CEO.

CompTel/ASCENTs Chairman J. Sherman Henderson III, who is also president and CEO of Lightyear Network Solutions LLC, adds that all members of the association will continue to benefit from the same great services theyve been accustomed to over the years, including the trade expos, conventions and business opportunities.

As the telecommunications industry evolves, it is important that as businessmen and women, we remain on the cutting edge. With a broader membership, bigger shows and better educational programs that focus on ways to be more efficient and provide greater services, the new association can help its members achieve success quicker, says Henderson.

Another change on the horizon at the association is one of leadership. Late last fall, CEO Frisby announced that he planned to step down in early 2005. The search for a new CEO is under way, says Henderson, during which time Frisby will remain on board as the associations interim CEO.

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