Four headshots of FirstNet's new board members and the words "Board Member Appointments"

Commerce Secretary Appoints FirstNet Board Members; Statements from FirstNet Chair, Board Appointees

RESTON, Va., Feb. 8, 2018 - Today, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross announced the appointment of four individuals to serve on the Board of the First Responder Network Authority, including three new membersThe following are statements on today’s announcement from the FirstNet Board Chair Sue Swenson and the four appointees.

FirstNet Board Chair Sue Swenson“I am pleased to welcome our newest Board members, as well as Sheriff Richard Stanek who is returning for another term. FirstNet has come a long way, but there is still much work to do.  With the addition of these individuals to the Board, we are well positioned for the next phase of FirstNet and the implementation and operation of the nationwide public safety broadband network.

“I want to thank our outgoing members for their service to FirstNet and the public safety community, including Ed Reynolds, who was a member of the FirstNet Board since the beginning and brought extensive wireless and executive-level experience to the Finance and Technology committees; Chief Chris Burbank, who served on our Technology Committee and helped expand our relationships with law enforcement officials around the country; and Gov. Jim Douglas, who was Chair of the Finance Committee and provided expert guidance on our budget and was a valuable resource throughout the state plans and governors’ decisions. It was an honor to work with all of these individuals during an important time in the history of FirstNet; from our startup days through the growth and evolution of the organization to where we are today.  Their contributions to FirstNet were invaluable and their dedication to public safety unmatched.”

Robert Osterthaler, Consultant and Strategic Advisor: “First responders put their lives on the line every day to protect this country, and I am honored to be able to serve them as an appointee to the FirstNet Board. They deserve the best network, and I look forward to working with the FirstNet team and the public safety community to deliver a nationwide broadband network for our local, state, Federal, and tribal first responders.”

Richard J. Ross, Jr, Philadelphia Police Commissioner“I am honored to have been selected to serve on the FirstNet Board as a representative of the law enforcement community.  This is an exciting time for all of our nation’s first responders, and I look forward to working with my colleagues on the Board to ensure public safety gets the best, most secure network for their day-to-day and emergency communications needs.”

Richard W. Stanek, Sheriff, Hennepin County, MN: “I am extremely honored to be re-appointed to the Board. With the first-ever public safety network going live across the country, I am excited about the opportunities that lie ahead to transform public safety communications and help first responders do their jobs safely and more effectively.”

David Zolet, Chief Executive Officer, LMI: “FirstNet has a critical mission that supports the security of our nation.  It will be an honor to serve on the Board and oversee the implementation of a network that will enhance the safety of first responders and the communities they serve across the country.”

For more information on today’s announcement, visit

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