2015 was a year full of new partnerships, new hires, expansion of the Education Exchange, the overall betterment of our staff through extensive training programs and much more. This time of year always sparks a sense of self reflection, so our team decided to join in and evaluate all we accomplished in 2015.

New Partnerships

NGN had a busy year in terms of cultivating new partnerships and expanding its relationships with existing customers.

iRiS Networks and NGN announced an interconnection to combine their collective network reach via Georgia iRisEthernet interconnection between Tennessee and North Georgia. The interconnection of networks provided the region’s business community with access to broadband connectivity services from 1Mbps to 100Gbps and is working as a strong selling point for attracting new companies to the area that require high network speeds.

Georgia Public Web (GPW) and NGN partnered to expand broadband availability to underserved areas of Georgia. The partnership allowed each cooperative access to areas of the state where they previously had limited resources. NGN and GPW customers with multiple locations throughout the state have benefited with increased service availability.

NGN was selected by the University of North Georgia’s Board of Regents to connect the university’s new Dahlonega Campus to the Blue Ridge Campus. Members of the NGN team joined the Board of Regents to celebrate the opening of the new campus at the ribbon cutting ceremony.

New Hires

NGN believes its team is its greatest asset! We were thrilled to promote and hire some exceptional people in 2015.

Michael-Foor-400x300-21In late August, NGN appointed Michael Foor as Vice President of Market and Member Services. Michael was selected after spending two and a half years diligently working to establish Georgia Communications (renamed NGN Connect) and was instrumental in providing Georgia consumers with alternative broadband solutions. In his new role he is working to develop and implement internal and external communication plans to complement NGN’s services, focusing specifically on workforce development, infrastructure financing and corporate readiness.

NGN further strengthened its marketing department with the addition of Alyssa Sellers as Business & Alyssa-Picture-750x500Marketing Administrator. Alyssa first joined the NGN family as Executive Assistant for NGN Connect, where she oversaw the company’s accounting functions, managed daily office operations, and played a strong role in the launch of the Education Exchange with event coordination, website development and strategic partner relations. Her primary focus is to support NGN’s business operations, help further strengthen market presence through a multi-platform marketing approach, and aid with the company’s government and economic development initiatives.

IMG_4818-300x400Our technician team saw growth this year as well. Brandon Tarpley joined NGN as an Installation and Field Maintenance Technician. Brandon is certified in Tower Climbing Safety & Rescue and is a certified Comtrain Tower Climbing & Safety Instructor. He is proficient in heavy equipment operation including skid-steer, excavator, dozer, loader, towing trailers, and cultivating equipment. He is experienced in cutting, welding, soldering, conduit installation, cable assembly and installation.



Education ExchangeNGN_NEGaRegionalLibrarySystem_photo21-300x255

In early September, NGN announced it would provide 100Mb Symmetrical Internet Connections to the
Northeast Georgia Library System
as an extension of NGN’s Education Exchange. Along with broadband Internet services, NGN Connect also provided the libraries with a package of services including hosted Wi-Fi service and a VoIP telephone system at each of its six locations.

IMG_3437 (2)The Little School, a preschool located in Clarkesville, GA used the Education Exchange to stream The Center for Puppetry Arts’ “The Little Red Hen & the Grain of Wheat.” Located approximately 80 miles from The Little School, an in person visit to The Center for Puppetry Arts would have required tiring travel for the young students. Luckily, The Little School had the Education Exchange powered by NGN at its disposal and was able to stream the event live from its campus to the delight of the preschoolers and teachers.

Education Exchange showed its educational versatility by bringing the AFJROTC students ofDSCN0120 (2) Habersham High School a live simulcast covering leadership and ethics in business during a session called “H2L” (Honor to Lead). The event occurred live on the campus of the University of North Georgia at the same time it was being broadcast into the classroom. Organizing a traditional field trip for Habersham High School students to experience the session in person would have required advanced planning, travel arrangements, transportation costs, potentially refreshment costs and likely a full day of students missing their regularly scheduled classes. Education Exchange allowed Habersham High school to give its students a great academic experience without breaking the school’s budget.

Fiber Network Owners Alliance (FNA)

PaulNGN President & CEO, Paul Belk, was named the inaugural president of Fiber Network Owners Alliance (FNA). FNA is a strategic alliance of organizations focused on aligning their fiber network resources for the purpose of providing a unified platform to create business and operational advantages for its members.

FNA currently connects 29 charter members resulting in over 70,000 combined network miles spanning 28 states. With the majority of its charter members made up of small to mid-sized networks, FNA provides a “check and balance” to larger organizations within the industry. FNA charter members strive to provide the residents in the areas they serve with reliable service, local jobs and other economic benefits that would not otherwise exist.

Training Programs

As part of NGN’s commitment to providing world-class support to its customers, the NOC team attended a two-day training on Infinera DWDM digital networking systems in August. A wide variety of topics were covered during the training sessions and was key in providing NGN’s NOC team with a more comprehensive understanding of the Infinera provisioning and emergency response process.

Our team kept sharp this August, by attending a Ubiquiti training session just a few weeks after the Infinera training session wrapped up. The Ubiquiti training provided extensive and in-depth training on Radio Frequency (RF) principals, RF theory, RF propagation, and more specifically on Ubiquiti Data modulation, data encryption, frequency shifting, channel planning, link design and system deployment.