Catharine Rice, President, SEATOA
Catharine Rice is President of the SouthEast Association of Telecommunications Officers and Advisors (SEATOA).
For the last ten years, Catharine has been a cable and broadband consultant serving North Carolina communities in planning and deploying local broadband systems, focusing particularly on those communities in the Research Triangle area and surrounding rural counties.
The earlier periods of this work included cable rate regulatory oversight and enforcing build-out and transfer of ownership requirements under local cable franchises.
With the passage of the state's cable deregulatory legislation, her
focus turned to developing municipal solutions to the lack of private sector broadband deployments and competition, including working with the City of Wilson
in the development and implementation of North Carolina's first fiber-to-the home system.
When the industry attempted to shut down that system and other municipal systems, Catharine
organized a North Carolina grassroots movement with SEATOA
and worked with NCLM
to block industry-sponsored anti-municipal broadband legislation, a battle which lasted four years but, disappointingly, ended with the industry prevailing under new Republican leadership.
During this same period, Catharine lead numerous SEATOA
efforts to guarantee PEG access funding (and actual payment) through revisions to the state's Video Services Competition Act.
Prior to her work in North Carolina, Ms. Rice served more than ten years as Vice President of the Washington, DC-based municipal-consulting firm, Institute for the Positive Use of Technology, (InPUT).
She holds a masters degree from the University of Pennsylvania's Annenberg School of Communications and served as NATOA's Administrative Officer from 1984-1989.