Chris Pedersen, Vice President, Development and Planning
Chris Pedersen acts as the primary relationship manager for placement and development of new broadband programming both nationally and internationally. Chris identifies the broadband needs of various state agencies, libraries, educational systems, etc., and responds with comprehensive solutions. He also speaks Danish and Spanish.
Eric Frederick, Vice President, Community Affairs
Eric Frederick serves as Vice President, Community Affairs for Connected Nation. Eric is responsible for managing the development and implementation of Connected Nation’s Connected Community Engagement Program. He also develops and maintains partner relationships and provides primary management, oversight, and support for Connected Nation Michigan’s state broadband strategies and leverages that experience to lend guidance to Connected Nation's other state programs.
Tom Stephenson, Community Technology Advisor
Tom Stephenson serves as Community Technology Advisor. Tom coordinates and manages the activities of regional planning teams across the state. Tom provides “train-the-trainer” activities to the regional planning teams on the broadband landscape to spur digital literacy activities in each region. In addition, with assistance from Connected Nation’s communications staff and the volunteers of the regional planning teams, he works to increase regional and local awareness of the planning teams, the planning process, the benefits of increased broadband adoption, and Connected Nation's state programs through the media and local organizations. Tom holds a bachelor of science and a master of science in administration from Central Michigan University.
Wes Kerr, Director, Community Solutions
Wes Kerr helps ensure the implementation of Technology Action Plans developed for communities through Connected Nation’s Connected Community Engagement Program (ConnectedSM) and works closely with clients and stakeholders to provide solutions that will help them meet their technology goals.
Heather Gate, Director, Digital Inclusion
Heather Gate serves as Director of Digital Inclusion Program Development for Connected Nation. Heather is responsible for managing the development and implementation of Connected Nation’s digital inclusion programs. Heather provides high-impact project management services, including day-to-day program management and funding research. Heather also helps to maintain existing program partner relationships and assists with identification of potential new partners or innovative business opportunities which are in line with program missions. Heather holds a bachelor of science in computer science, a master’s in computer science, and a master’s in public administration from Kentucky State University.
Connected Nation, Connected Texas' parent organization, has been recognized as a Top 10 Best Places to Work Winner for its commitment to providing a positive and productive work environment where employees can excel. Connected Texas offers a unique benefits package including: vacation/sick days; holiday pay; health, dental, and vision insurance; professional development opportunities; and reimbursement for broadband services and fitness memberships. Our office environment is professional and high-tech and our team members are career- and team-focused.