A coalition of stakeholders including public, nonprofit and private organizations, service providers, government agencies, educational institutions, regional broadband champions, policymakers, and citizens launched Michigan Moonshot, an ambitious initiative designed to solve the digital divide in rural Michigan. Engineers, librarians, teachers, and digital advocates within its network gathered for the Michigan Broadband Summit in Gaylord, Michigan on September 24, 2019. Next Century Cities (NCC) was proud to co-sponsor the event. 

Francella Ochillo, NCC’s Executive Director, provided keynote remarks on the importance and urgency of expanding broadband access. She shared an overview of Federal Communications Commission priorities and recommendations for local advocacy. As she explained, the digital divide is a nationwide issue with stark illustrations in cities throughout Michigan. Francella highlighted NCC member success stories, urging attendees to consider new broadband access frameworks and partnerships that could help accelerate deployment.

Click here to review the five page executive summary of the event. Like NCC’s members, community leaders and broadband advocates throughout Michigan know that improving access is critical to improving quality of life for residents and promoting economic prosperity throughout the region. Solving the digital divide in Michigan and beyond will require a, “shared vision and partnerships from a coalition of stakeholders: public, nonprofit and private organizations, service providers, governmental agencies, educational institutions, regional broadband champions, policy makers and citizens.”