U.S. Secretary of Commerce Announces Members to Serve on FirstNet Board


Thursday, August 18, 2016

U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker today announced the reappointment of three leading experts on public safety, wireless broadband communications, and state and local government to serve three-year terms on the First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet) Board.

Secretary Pritzker reappointed three current Board members to another term:

  • Jeff Johnson, FirstNet Vice Chair, former Fire Chief and CEO of the Western Fire Chiefs Association.
  • Sue Swenson, FirstNet Chairwoman and CEO of Novatel Wireless.
  • Teri Takai, senior advisor at the Center for Digital Government and former CIO for the states of Michigan and California.

In addition, Secretary Pritzker announced that Swenson would continue to serve as chairwoman of the FirstNet Board for another two-year term.

“We are fortunate to have the service of individuals who bring a unique set of skills to the Board as it guides FirstNet in its important work,” said Secretary Pritzker. “Their experience is essential as FirstNet moves closer toward launching a nationwide broadband network that will provide first responders with the 21st century tools they need to save lives.”

The terms of Barry Boniface, Johnson, Swenson, and Takai will expire on August 20, 2016. Boniface decided not to seek reappointment to the FirstNet board due to the demands of his business. He has agreed, however, to stay on until his successor is named or until the end of the year, whichever comes first.

“FirstNet is at a critical point as it decides on a strategic partner and will benefit from the steady and continued leadership of Sue, Jeff and Teri and the other board members,” said Lawrence E. Strickling, Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Communications and Information and NTIA Administrator. “At the same time, I want to thank Barry for his significant and dedicated service to the board and for his willingness to stay on until his successor is named.”

FirstNet is an independent authority within the Commerce Department’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) mandated by Congress to develop, build and operate the first nationwide wireless public safety broadband network. The network will enable better communication among emergency services personnel, which will improve response times and save lives.

The Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012 created FirstNet, and Congress directed that FirstNet be governed by a 15-person Board, with the Secretary of Homeland Security, the U.S. Attorney General, and the Director of the Office of Management and Budget named as permanent Board members. Congress charged the Secretary of Commerce with selecting the remaining 12 members.

To view the bios of the FirstNet Board, visit: http://firstnet.gov/board/members.  To learn more about FirstNet, visit: http://firstnet.gov

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Last updated: 2016-08-18 13:43

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