We’re excited to announce that Peggy Schaffer, the visionary leader who retired last year as executive director of the ConnectMaine Authority, is joining VETRO as a part-time strategic advisor focusing on supporting state broadband offices. As part of VETRO’s team, Peggy will be positioned to work with state broadband leaders to share insights and best practices for effectively investing the billions of dollars flowing into broadband projects through state and federal initiatives.
Peggy is a well-known leader in the U.S. broadband arena, working with the State Broadband Leaders Network and serving on the American Association of Public Broadband Board. Peggy has been committed to expanding broadband to underserved areas in the State of Maine for many years. In her executive director role, Peggy managed ConnectMaine’s budgets, grant processes, and public outreach. A few key accomplishments during Peggy’s ConnectMaine tenure included the development of a targeting, verification, and validation process for infrastructure grants, the implementation of the state’s broadband intelligence platform, the building of a structure to support communities in the development of Broadband Utility Districts, and a successful application to the NTIA Broadband Infrastructure Program.
“We’re thrilled that Peggy has agreed to join us,” said Brian Mefford, VETRO VP of Broadband Strategy. “In addition to her wicked intellect, tenacity, and great sense of humor, Peggy brings a tremendous amount of knowledge and experience to the table that will help us better serve our customers, whether they be public agencies investing broadband funds or the private ISPs that are striving to put grant dollars to work in local communities.”
“I’ve lived a lot of the challenges that State Broadband leaders are now facing, only on a much smaller scale. The current funding requires a significant scale-up of all the work State offices do. And the expectations and requirements mean the stakes have just gotten a lot higher too,” said Schaffer. “Working with the VETRO team was a key element of our early success in Maine. Their BIP platform holds the promise of being that system of record for all of this work and data. This technology and the team behind it can really help State Broadband offices deliver well-managed programs. I am very excited to be part of helping State Offices develop long-term best practice solutions with this technology.”
Prior to joining ConnectMaine, Peggy was the Small Business Advocate in the Secretary of State’s office and served as the Co-chair for the Maine Broadband Coalition. In her 20 years of political work, Peggy has also worked for the Department of Economic and Community Development and as a Chief of Staff in the Maine State Senate.
Find out more about Peggy on LinkedIn.