FCC Chairman Ajit Pai Visits Blackfoot Communications; Tours Fiber Network Sites

FCC Chairman, Ajit Pai & Blackfoot CEO, Jason Williams

The tour provided an opportunity to meet with Blackfoot customers and see Blackfoot’s multi-year broadband network upgrade across ILEC and CLEC territories.

Blackfoot, the owner and operator of the region’s largest multi-gigabit network, welcomed FCC Chairman Ajit Pai to Montana today. During Chairman Pai’s visit, Blackfoot CEO, Jason Williams led a tour of the company’s fiber construction, followed by a working session that was focused on delivering broadband access to rural communities across Blackfoot’s service areas.

“Bridging the digital divide and expanding Internet access to all corners of the country is my top priority at the FCC,” said Chairman Pai. “That’s why I appreciate the opportunity to visit states, including Montana, to see how service providers – large and small – are driving broadband access to communities. During my visit with Blackfoot Communications, I heard about their efforts to expand high-speed broadband to remote parts of the state. I also visited the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes of the Flathead Reservation to see firsthand the buildout happening to connect Tribal lands with digital opportunity. Everyone who wants to participate in the digital economy should be able to do so.”

In addition to its fiber construction, Chairman Pai met with key Blackfoot stakeholders to discuss new customer-focused initiatives including Blackfoot’s open innovation lab C2M beta, new residential and enterprise-level product solutions, and company-wide smart growth projects.

“We were proud to host Chairman Pai and his team at our offices to provide an update on our multi-year broadband network upgrade project,” said Jason Williams. “In addition to extending our fiber across Montana, we were thrilled to describe the entrepreneurial opportunities created through our new open innovation lab; as well as our efforts to increase digital access to our residential and enterprise business customers by delivering new, state-of-the-art products and services.”