Members OK CompTel/ASCENT, ALTS Merger

The members of CompTel/ASCENT and the Association for Local Telecommunications Services (ALTS) voted last week to approve the merger of the two organizations. The merger, which will be completed March 1, combines more than 350 companies in support of the development and deployment of competitive communications networks and services for consumers and businesses. CompTel/ASCENT on Dec. 3 announced plans to merge with ALTS - the third such combination for the group over the last few years. CompTel merged with the America’s Carriers Telecommunications Association in spring 1999 and ASCENT in fall 2003.

The new association will operate, in the short-term, under the name CompTel/ALTS, while its board of directors explores alternative branding strategies. The staffs of the associations will be combined and headquartered at CompTel/ASCENT’s offices in Washington.

“The merger of CompTel/ASCENT and ALTS will enable facilities-based carriers and their partners to work together in solidarity to promote pro-competitive policies, as well as develop and strengthen the vital business relationships needed to be successful in today’s dynamic marketplace,” says CompTel/ASCENT Chairman J. Sherman Henderson III, president and CEO of Lightyear Network Solutions LLC.

“We met our goal of quickly closing this merger and we are excited to work together,” says ALTS Chairman Jim Geiger, president and CEO of Cbeyond Communications.

Henderson will serve as chairman of CompTel/ALTS. Geiger and Richard E. Burk, president and CEO of nii Communications Ltd., will be co-vice chairmen of the new association. Joseph Ambersley, president of PAETEC South at PAETEC Communications will be co-vice chair/treasurer.

H. Russell Frisby Jr., who announced in late November that he was stepping down from his post as president and CEO of CompTel, will continue as the association’s interim executive officer until a successor is found. The ALTS presidency has been held on an interim basis by Julia Strow, chair of the ALTS Operating Board, since October when John Windhausen Jr. resigned after serving the group for five years.

The CompTel/ALTS board of directors will consist of 32 members, 11 of which will serve on the board’s executive committee (see list below). Elections for a new board will be held in October at the group’s fall meeting.

CompTel/ALTS Board of Directors

Jim Akerhielm, CEO, NuVox Communications*
Joseph Ambersley, President, PAETEC SOUTH, PAETEC Communications*
Richard E. Burk, President & CEO, nii Communications Ltd.*
Jim Butman, President, TDS METROCOM
Frank Cantrel, Vice President, Government Affairs, MCI
William Capraro Jr., CEO, CIMCO Communications Inc.
Hank Carabelli, President & CEO, Pac-West Telecomm Inc.
Ron Contrado, President, Chairman and Founder, Homisco/Voicenet
Thomas M. Coughlin, Chairman, Alliance Group Services*
Aaron D. Cowell Jr., President & CEO, US LEC Corp.*
Donald C. Davis, Senior Vice President, Corporate Development, Trinsic Communications
Susan Jin Davis, Vice President, Government & External Affairs, Covad Communications Co.
Kevin Dickens, Executive Vice President & COO, Choice One Communications
Jim Falvey, Senior Vice President, Regulatory Affairs, Xspedius Communications
Brian Finkelstein, Chairman & CEO, Winstar Communications
Philip L. Forbes, Executive Vice President & COO, US Carrier Telecom
James F. Geiger, President & CEO, Cbeyond Communications*
Joseph A. Gregori, CEO, InfoHighway Communications Corp.*
Carl Grivner, CEO, XO Communications*
Robert T. Hale Sr., Chairman, Granite Communications Inc.
J. Sherman Henderson III, President & CEO, Lightyear Network Solutions LLC*
Paul Hobby, CEO, Alpheus Communications
Jerry James, Executive Vice President, Enterprise Services, Grande Communications*
David H. Kelley, President, PPL Telecom LLC
David Malfara, President & CEO, Remi Communications
Daniel Moffat, President & CEO, New Edge Networks
Kathryn A. Morrissey, President, AT&T Global Wholesale Markets
Lynn E. Refer, CEO, Looking Glass Networks Inc.
Ray Russenberger, Chairman & CEO, Network Telephone
Richard A. Smith, President & CEO, Eschelon Telecom
Casey Wojciechowski, General Manager, American Farm Bureau

*Executive Committee member

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