NATOA 2014 Annual Conference in St Paul Sep 29 to Oct 2

This looks like a great conference. I am hoping to attend a few sessions – but am not sure I’ll be able to make it. I wanted folks to at least know it was happing and so I’m including the full agenda for the National Association of Telecommunications Officers and Advisors Annual Conference

09/29/2014 – Monday, September 29, 2014

8:00 am – 4:00 pm – Registration Open
8:45 am – 4:00 pm – Broadband Pre-Conference Seminar

Broadband Pre-Conference Seminar
It’s all about broadband. And today’s mantra? “More capacity! Faster speeds!” But once a community has access to better services, what can it do with it? How does it make local governments more responsive and efficient? How does it help local businesses compete? What effects is it having on education and healthcare? And is it helping to bridge the digital divide, or are some people being left behind.

Join us for a one-day, pre-conference workshop that will answer these and other questions. Learn how high-capacity, high-speed broadband services can revolutionize the way governments works, how our kids learn, how we heal our sick, and become more civically engaged communities.

Moderators: [tba]
Speakers: [tba]

8:45 am – 9:00 am – Welcome from Tony Perez
8:45 am – 4:00 pm – All Day Storytelling Workshop Featuring Mark Anderson

Storytelling Workshop Featuring Mark Anderson
NATOA is proud Storytelling Workshop instructor, photographer & editor Mark Anderson. Mark has shot and field-produced for major networks including Travel Channel, ESPN, and DIY and has created stories for Dateline NBC and the Today Show, among other programs. He has been most highly praised by his peers throughout his extensive career for his ability to manage relationships, lead teams and foster good morale. He is widely known as a collaborative and innovative leader. The team he led at KSTP TV (ABC Affiliate Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN) quickly rose to the top spot in the nation when they won the National Press Photographers Association Station of the Year Award twice in five years.
His unique approach to visual storytelling and video production has won him unprecedented honors.

Some of Mark’s awards include:
* 22 regional Emmy Awards
* Former National Press Photographers Association (NPPA) National Photographer of the Year
* Two-time winner of the National Edward R. Murrow Award
* Six-time Gold Medal winner at the New York International Film Festival
* One of Mark’s Gold Medals was voted “Best in Show” internationally for his documentary produced in Guatemala
* 2012 Telly Award winner for Cinematography, Light in Africa, the documentary that he directed and produced in Tanzania

Mark now owns his own business, “Creative Soul Video,”

Join us for a great day of Mark sharing examples of his work, an explanation of his process, his lifelong theory on leadership, how to reach and hold the audience, and other practical tips for beginner and veteran storytellers.
Moderators: [tba]
Speakers: Mark Anderson |

9:00 am – 10:15 am – Are You Gigging Me?

Are You Gigging Me?
Broadband infrastructure is an essential utility that must be accessible to both the public and private sectors to ensure economic growth. Modernizing network infrastructure to offer high-speed, high-capacity services is a must for any community that wants to compete in today’s global economy. This session will look at performance-on-demand networking, cloud applications, cybersecurity, and other topics that will enable local governments to move towards electronic means of sustained economic growth.
Moderators: Doug Adams |
Speakers: Jerome Alston | Chris Janson | Joe Leonard |

10:30 am – 11:45 am – Maximizing Your Network’s Potential

Maximizing Your Network’s Potential
You have marketable assets and you don’t even know it! Have you built conduit? Fiber? Are you planning to do so? In this session, we will delve into best practices for planning, building, pricing, marketing, and leasing your fiber. We’ll also explore how to evaluate the feasibility of providing robust services and applications across your network for the benefit of the end users. You have more tools to engage the broadband market than you know – come to this session to learn how to maximize those tools.
Moderators: Lori Sherwood |
Speakers: Doug Adams | Hunter George | Joanne Hovis |

12:00 pm – 1:30 pm – Luncheon Session

If You Build It, Will They Use It?
It’s not enough to have good broadband connectivity and accessibility in your community. You also have to make sure that your residents see the relevancy of this technology to their daily lives and make use of it. Our panel of experts will discuss what they are doing to help bridge the digital divide through their innovative broadband adoption programs targeting seniors, students, and low income populations.
Moderators: Danna MacKenzie |
Speakers: Larra Clark | Bernadine Joselyn | Thomas Kamber, Ph.D. |

1:45 pm – 3:00 pm – Exhibitor Apps Demonstration Session
3:00 pm – 4:00 pm – If You Got It, Flaunt It

If You Got It, Flaunt It
Does your community have a gig? If so, are you using it to its full potential? Are your schools and libraries connected? How it is being utilized by your locality’s health care providers? Are you seeing the kind of economic growth you hoped for? Our panel of experts will explain how gig connectivity, big data and the growing inventory of apps can ramp up public services, save you money and time, and improve your community’s quality of life.
Moderators: Mike Lynch |
Speakers: Mitsuko Herrera | Christopher Mitchell | Jeff O’Neill |

4:30 pm – 5:45 pm – NATOA Rookies Boot Camp
5:45 pm – 6:30 pm – Happy Hour Sponsored by Google Fiber
6:30 pm – 8:30 pm – Off-Site Affinity Dinners

09/30/2014 – Tuesday, September 30, 2014

8:00 am – 4:30 pm – Registration Open
9:00 am – 9:30 am – General Conference Welcome
Moderators: [tba]
Speakers: Chris Coleman |
9:30 am – 10:45 am – CONCURRENT SESSIONS

NATOA’s Community Broadband Award Winners – Their Stories
For 8 years, NATOA has recognized excellence in community broadband projects, organizations, and adoption programs from across the country and the vital role that they play in providing advanced communications services to our residents and businesses. With the FCC examining the role these networks play and how state laws are adversely affecting their deployment, now is a good time to learn more about these award winning projects and programs – past and present.

Moderators: Lori Sherwood |
Speakers: Thomas Kamber, Ph.D. | Ted Pibil | Mike Powell |

Station Transition to HD
A combined panel of your colleagues from PEG facilities across the country who have transition plans underway and vendors who provide the services will cover planning and implementing a station transition to HD and what issues are faced. Topics will include master control, live and remote sites, upgrading city halls, studios, and trucks.
Moderators: Jeffrey Lueders |
Speakers: James Burns | Chris Perry | Randy Simpson |

10:45 am – 11:15 am – Refreshment Break
11:15 am – 12:30 pm – CONCURRENT SESSIONS

Public Safety Communications: FirstNet and NextGen 911 Services
Get an update on FirstNet and the build-out of the nationwide interoperable public safety wireless broadband network. Find out what opportunities exist for localities to use their expertise and infrastructure to make sure FirstNet serves their communities. And while you’re waiting for FirstNet to come to town, get the latest on NextGen 911 services and learn how they can improve public safety communications in your jurisdiction.

Moderators: Barry Fraser |
Speakers: Mark Dunaski | Amanda Hilliard | Gigi Smith |

Future of Non-Linear Editing & Work Production Flow
Is your station using an outdated editing platform because you don’t know whether to upgrade or change edit platforms? Our panel will discuss the pros and cons of Apple and Adobe edit platforms. Discussion will include latest features/ improvements, tips and tricks for each software, use of Creative Cloud, and use of shared storage system.
Moderators: Abraham Gonzalez |
Speakers: Michael Popadiuk | Jose Villanueva |

12:45 pm – 2:00 pm – General Session Luncheon featuring Marchus Sachs, Verizon VP of National Security Policy

Local Governments – Where Do We Fit in the Cyber Ecosystem?
Federal and state agencies and departments work in close cooperation with one another on cyber security issues. Learn more about the nuances and intricacies of federal and state coordination and how local governments can fit into this cyber ecosystem.
Moderators: [tba]
Speakers: Marcus Sachs |

2:30 pm – 3:45 pm – CONCURRENT SESSIONS

Wireless Facilities Siting: DAS, Small Cells, Picocells and More
With the proliferation of wireless devices and growing consumer demand for better connectivity comes increased deployment of Distributed Antenna Systems (DAS), small cells, and other equipment in our cities and towns. Where is this technology being deployed? Who is using it? And how is it being permitted? Our panel of experts will give you all the answers.
Moderators: Tillman Lay |
Speakers: Jonathan Kramer, Esq. | Lorna Slott | Jeffrey Steinberg, Esq. | Lisa Veith |

High-Definition “HD” Camera Showcase
With many varieties and price points for HD cameras, it’s challenging to keep up with the many brands, models, and features. This session will showcase various Field/ENG (Electronic News Gathering) HD cameras and their capabilities. View and hear about a range of HD cameras in varying price ranges, and get educated about features and benefits for your facility.
Moderators: Alex Sousa |
Speakers: Alan Cherne | Christopher Soltesz |

3:45 pm – 4:15 pm – Refreshment Break
4:15 pm – 5:30 pm – CONCURRENT SESSIONS

Making Your Community Digitally Inclusive
Broadband use has transformed how we work, shop, learn, obtain crucial government services and participate in our democracy. This workshop will provide a framework, case studies and real tools, covering:
– Introduction to the National Digital Inclusion Framework and status on the National Broadband Plan concerning broadband adoption.
– Data sources and methods for community assessments of technology adoption and needs
– Strategies and policies to support digitally inclusive communities, including franchising terms, telecommunications investment and public, private, and non-profit partnerships.

Moderators: Catharine Rice |
Speakers: Laura Breeden | Adja Gildersleve | David Keyes |

Programming Vendor Showcase in the Exhibit Hall

Moderators: [tba]
Speakers: [tba]

5:30 pm – 7:30 pm – Welcome Reception and Silent Auction

10/01/2014 – Wednesday, October 1, 2014

8:00 am – 4:15 pm – Registration Open
8:00 am – 9:00 am – Board/Chapter Presidents Breakfast
9:00 am – 10:15 am – CONCURRENT SESSIONS

The View from the Hill, the FCC, and the States
Local governments have to pay attention to a variety of legislative and regulatory actions at both the federal and state levels. Issues such as the IP transition, public safety communications, rights-of-way authority and management, and protecting local revenue streams are on the front burner in Washington, DC and in state capitals across the nation. Hear from the experts advocating for local governments on these and other issues and become better equipped to address them in your jurisdiction.
Moderators: Steve Traylor |
Speakers: Yejin Jang | Julia Pulidindi | Laura Ziegler |

Protecting PEG for the Next 15 Years
One of the biggest challenges facing local communities is how to protect their PEG channels and funding during franchise renewals and in light of the challenges posed by Over-The-Top providers and changing viewer habits. This session will address everything from PEG channel migration from analog to SD to HD, simulcast, capital and operational funding options, video on demand, and more.
Moderators: Jeffrey Lueders |
Speakers: Brian Grogan, Esq. | Mike Wassenaar | Coralie Wilson |

10:15 am – 10:45 am – Refreshment Break
10:45 am – 12:00 pm – CONCURRENT SESSIONS

Considering the Public Option in Broadband Deployment
More and more communities are considering how they can work, either alone or in partnership with private investors, to deploy next generation fiber optic networks. And a wide range of new models are emerging for public broadband initiatives. In this session, we’ll explore some of the innovative new models that communities are using to meet local needs for world class broadband networks.
Moderators: James Baller |
Speakers: William Aycock | Brandon Bowersox-Johnson | Joanne Hovis |

Obtaining PEG HD Channels in Your Next Franchise Agreement
Regulatory bodies and PEG access organizations are struggling with gaining HD channel carriage on cable systems and implementing HD channel projects. This panel will present the practical and regulatory challenges LFAs face in obtaining commitments for HD channels in franchise negotiations, strategies for addressing the need for HD channels in your needs assessment, and legal authority to support your position. Speakers will share their experience and expertise from developing strategies for and negotiating PEG HD channels in franchise agreements, and working with the cable operator to manage the transition to HD channel delivery.
Moderators: Adrian Herbst, Esq. |
Speakers: Kenneth Fellman, Esq. | Julie Omelchuck |

12:30 pm – 2:00 pm – Keynote and Awards Luncheon

Keynote and Awards Luncheon
Featuring FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler
Moderators: [tba]
Speakers: Tom Wheeler |

2:30 pm – 3:45 pm – CONCURRENT SESSIONS

Impacts of Changing Markets on Localism
The pending Comcast/Time Warner/Charter/SpinCo transaction. The proposed AT&T/DirecTV merger. And the potential expansion of Google Fiber to 34 more cities. All of these developments may have a profound effect on local governments and how they do business with service providers. This session will discuss the potential effects of these developments on broadband, over-the-top providers, smaller cable operators, and, most importantly, the public.
Moderators: Kenneth Fellman, Esq. |
Speakers: Rondella Hawkins | Mary Beth Henry | Joseph Van Eaton, Esq. |

Monster Truck Rally
Step Outside the Hotel and visit a group of MN PEG Production Trucks in various sizes and formats. Meet some of the producers, engineers, and equipment providers who work with them. Learn about the latest issues such as planning for upgrades and renewals, approaches to staffing and volunteer recruitment/retention, policies for contracting out for revenue generation, and of course, LIVE mobile cablecasting and web streaming. We will have a range from a large High-Def state of the art truck that contracts out with local broadcasters part-time, to a modestly-priced “studio in a box,” and everything in between.
Moderators: [tba]
Speakers: [tba]

3:45 pm – 4:15 pm – Refreshment Break
4:15 pm – 5:30 pm – CONCURRENT SESSIONS

Franchise Renewal and Cable Regulation in the Digital World
Franchising and renewals present issues and opportunities concerning franchise fees, PEG funding, and more. This session will address these and other issues and provide an update on the challenges and progress being made in states that have passed state franchising legislation. You’ll also hear how the IP transition and new Over-The-Top services are affecting cable services, renewals, and revenues. We’ll spend a large portion of the session addressing your specific questions and concerns, so come prepared.

Moderators: Garth Ashpaugh |
Speakers: Sue Buske | Gerard Lavery Lederer | Richard Nielsen |

Monster Truck Rally (continued)
Step Outside the Hotel and visit a group of MN PEG Production Trucks in various sizes and formats. Meet some of the producers, engineers, and equipment providers who work with them. Learn about the latest issues such as planning for upgrades and renewals, approaches to staffing and volunteer recruitment/retention, policies for contracting out for revenue generation, and of course, LIVE mobile cablecasting and web streaming. We will have a range from a large High-Def state of the art truck that contracts out with local broadcasters part-time, to a modestly-priced “studio in a box,” and everything in between.
Moderators: [tba]
Speakers: [tba]

6:00 pm – 7:00 pm – Chapter Meetings

10/02/2014 – Thursday, October 2, 2014

8:00 am – 3:00 pm – Optional Programming Tours

Programming Tour 1 – Progressive Tour of Four Twin Cities PEG Stations
Attendees to meet in hotel lobby at 7:50 am to board buses. Buses will depart at 8:00 am

Participants will visit a variety of PEG station sizes and structures, from small suburban stand-alone owned building, large suburban, to custom business park rental property, to urban downtown space, with a range of budget levels and PEG structures. A lively NATOA member tour guide will host and narrate the tour, and guests are sure to get lots of information, ideas, logo swag, and door prizes throughout the day. Besides seeing the PEG stations and their equipment and facilities, you’ll hear all about the Twin Cities rich entertainment and communications industries and see many famous landmarks along the way. This optional tour includes round-trip transportation, breakfast and lunch. The cost is $50 and you must sign up in advance.
Moderators: [tba]
Speakers: [tba]

Programming Tour 2 – Bloomington PEG & Mall of America Behind the Scenes Tour
Attendees to meet in hotel lobby at 7:50 am to board buses. Buses will depart at 8:00 am

Visit Bloomington’s beautiful combined City Hall/PEG Facility/Performing Arts Theatre/Visual Arts Center, and experience a behind the scenes tour of the Mall of America’s communications command center and hear about the Mall’s social media efforts, lunch on your own at the mall, and return to the hotel in time for Annual Business Meeting, or explore the Mall on your own and take Light Rail back to the hotel in time for the GPA Gala.This tour includes round-trip transportation and breakfast. The cost is $50 and you must register in advance.

Bloomington, Minnesota’s Mall of America is one of the most visited tourist destinations in the world. The Mall of America features 520 stores, 50 restaurants, 11,000 year-round employees and an average 40 million visitors annually – more than the combined populations of North Dakota, South Dakota, Iowa and Canada. The Mall’s social media specialists who monitor online conversations and manage content to engage the Mall’s more than 460,000 Facebook fans and 30,000 Twitter followers will present. Participants will also learn about the Communications Command Center used for security, social media, and marketing and communications. With a full amusement park (think Disney under glass), a large concert/performance stage, and a year-round calendar of media events and performances, the communications, media, and technology aspects of the Mall are complex and demanding. Communications professionals will appreciate getting behind the scenes and meeting personnel at this complex operation.
Moderators: [tba]
Speakers: [tba]

8:30 am – 1:00 pm – Registration Open
9:00 am – 12:00 pm – Roundtables

Moderated Discussions on Your Choice of Topics
Last year these roundtables received rave reviews. Since so many of our attendees wear multiple “hats,” this year we are adding a moderated wrap-up to share summaries of what you missed at the other tables over lunch.

FIRST pick your favorite topic.

THEN learn and compare notes with NATOA leaders and experts from around the country, as well as sharing your points of view and asking the questions you need answered! Synthesize the information you’ve been soaking up all week in sessions. Take home invaluable information for your own operation. Meet NATOA committee chairs and help shape future priorities and initiatives of NATOA and its chapters.

Franchise Renewal – Compare notes and lessons learned with your colleagues and legal, engineering, and needs assessment experts from around the country. We will divide up by operator if appropriate. (Closed session for government employees and their advisors.)

Broadband Deployment & Adoption Issues
This is an opportunity to have informal conversation with the experts! Join our small group discussion of broadband deployment and adoption issues, and enjoy a unique opportunity to learn from both your peers and our national expert guests.

Consumer Protection & PEG in State Franchising States – Share information on what’s happening now, what strategies are being discussed, and how a federal telecomm re-write may or may not impact these issues. What are the broken promises of state franchising? How can this information be used? What creative strategies are being used to keep PEG alive? What partnerships have been formed?

Cutting Edge Technology Issues for Local Government – Is your city or station developing an app? Or looking for someone who already has? How are you integrating live programming with social media to reach and retain new audiences? Would you pass a basic cyber security audit? How’s your HD transition going? You bring the questions, we’ll provide the lively discussion!

Moderators: [tba]
Speakers: [tba]

12:30 pm – 1:45 pm – General Session and Luncheon

Lunch & Learn
Moderators from morning roundtables will re-cap highlights of the morning discussions over lunch. It’s like cloning yourself, you will feel like you attended four or more different sessions, and you will go home looking really smart!
Moderators: Mike Reardon |
Speakers: Mitsuko Herrera | Donna Keating | Lori Sherwood | Coralie Wilson |

2:00 pm – 2:30 pm – Annual Business Meeting Voting Credentials Issued
2:30 pm – 4:00 pm – Annual Business Meeting
6:30 pm – 7:00 pm – GPA Ticket Table Open
7:00 pm – 9:00 pm – GPA Awards Dinner
9:00 pm – 11:00 pm – GPA After Party

This entry was posted in Conferences, MN by Ann Treacy. Bookmark the permalink.

About Ann Treacy

Librarian who follows rural broadband in MN and good uses of new technology (, hosts a radio show on MN music (, supports people experiencing homelessness in Minnesota ( and helps with social justice issues through Women’s March MN.

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