Broadband: If You Build It, Will They Come?

Friday, Nov. 13 | 9:30–10:30 a.m.

Broadband is described as the great enabler … a tool to open doors of opportunity for all Americans no matter where they are. Long on plans, but short on funds, the broadband movement recently saw a massive injection of funding from the 2009 federal stimulus. While more than two-thirds of American households subscribe to broadband Internet, less than one-third of the population has access—signaling an increased digital divide, especially in the rural South. Examining the status of broadband in the U.S., this session will explore how states are promoting access and using federal stimulus dollars to connect all citizens.



Emmitt Carlton, Special Counsel

Office of Intergovernmental Affairs | Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau | Federal Communications Commission (FCC)
Emmitt Carlton is special counsel in the FCC Office of Intergovernmental Affairs.  He serves as point of contact and coordinator of information-sharing and cooperative efforts with state and local agencies and legislators. He also coordinates outreach to state, local and tribal governments to foster understanding of FCC programs, policies, rules and decisions. Carlton also fosters relationship building with organizations representing state and local governments . Carlton has also worked in the FCC Enforcement Bureau as assistant director of the Telecommunications Consumers Division and served in the Spectrum Enforcement Division. 
Before joining the FCC, Carlton was senior consultant and counsel for the public affairs firm Issue Dynamics, Inc., where he was responsible for strategic alliance, coalition and relationship building.  He also previously served as Consumer Protection and Civil Rights counsel at the National Association of Attorneys General and was an attorney at the Federal Trade Commission. Carlton is on the Steering Committee of the Washington, D.C., Bar Computer and Telecommunications Law Section and is on the board of directors of the National Active and Retired Federal Employees AssociationPremier Federal Credit Union. He is also a former Virginia NAACP president, former chairman of the Virginia Charitable Gaming Board and a former adjunct professor at American University, George Mason University Law School and Northern Virginia Community College. 
The Indianapolis native received a bachelor’s degree from Brown University and a law  from the University of Virginia Law School.