Connecting our Communities, Celebrating Diversity, and Supporting Equality

Over the past year, one thing has been made certain: connection is crucial.

Over the past year, one thing has been made certain: connection is crucial.

Even in the absence of traditional gatherings, the power of connectivity was not deterred. We’ve gone to great lengths to stay in touch with the rest of the world – often in unexpected ways – through regular phone calls and video chats, outdoor hangouts, even bringing the silver screen into living rooms to watch movies at home. This dedication underscores AT&T’s values within the company and outside its walls: connectivity is born from collaboration.

As we wrap up the first quarter of the year – and look forward to brighter, better days ahead – I’d like to highlight some of the work we’ve done to keep our businesses, residents and first responders connected, and to help reform national policies to help close connectivity gaps. In addition, you can read more about how we’re celebrating diversity in our company and in our communities.

I welcome your feedback.

FirstNet Focus: Expansion in Page County and How FirstNet is Making a Difference in Loudoun County

First responders in Page County are getting a major boost in their wireless communications with the addition of a new, purpose-built FirstNet cell site. This new infrastructure is a part of the FirstNet network expansion taking place across the Commonwealth, bringing increased coverage, capacity and capabilities for public safety. This FirstNet cell site will provide new coverage around Shenandoah and Fleeburg for AT&T wireless customers in the area. Read more about this site HERE.

FirstNet is making a difference for law enforcement agencies across the nation—in both daily operations and at big events, whether planned or unplanned. In Northern Virginia, the Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office relies on FirstNet for everyday use, emergencies, and large events. Read more in a blog post by the FirstNet Authority.

We’re Expanding our Network in Virginia

AT&T customers and FirstNet subscribers in Fauquier and Clarke Counties in Virginia got a big boost in wireless connectivity. We’ve added new cell sites to enhance mobile broadband coverage in these communities and help give residents and first responders faster, more reliable wireless service. Our investment will help customers get the most out of their mobile devices.

A site in Sumerduck, Fauquier County, improves coverage around Mt. Holly and the Catlett Historic District. The site in Boyce, Clarke County, improves coverage around Berry and Pine Acres. Learn more HERE.

Not Broken, Simply Unfinished. Creating Pathways to Broadband Connectivity.

  • We experienced a lot of firsts in 2020 – some better than others, peppered in with ones we will never forget. For me, one of the most notable developments of last year was the marked spotlight on public policy and the gravity it has on our day-to-day lives. We’re overdue for a lot of discussions, but particularly when it comes to closing the digital divide.
  • Over the last several months, we have laid out our thoughts on how best to address the digital divide. To do this requires more than just investing – it needs sustainability. Watch AT&T CEO John Stankey discuss how Congress and the private sector can work together to end the broadband gap.
  • Recently, the National Urban League released a report on “Connecting and Uplifting America.” The report focuses on a singular and essential question: “How can the tools of the information economy be employed to create a more equitable and inclusive society.” Read more about this bold plan and AT&T’s efforts to drive us toward a more equitable and connected future.
  • We also recently filed our application to participate in the FCC’s Emergency Broadband Benefit program so we can offer low-income customers additional options for discounted broadband services.

Celebrating Those Making History Today to Shape Tomorrow

AT&T celebrates the contributions of those of those who are making history by shaping our future. In the spirit of honoring that excellence, AT&T Dream in Black presents the return of Black Future Makers, with a new group of extraordinary honorees ranging from a Grammy-award-winning music artist and civil rights activist to an independent filmmaker and medical physicist. Meet the 2021 Future Makers, here, and learn how they’re shaping the now, the new and the next for the culture.

For a chance to be honored as a Black Future Maker, consumers can post a 30 to 60 second video to social media, using the #dreaminblack and #attfuturemaker, telling what they are doing in their communities or fields to make a positive impact. Winners will be chosen each month from March through December 2021. Learn more to enter.

The Power of Women: How AT&T Works to Uplift and Empower Girls and Women

  • Women and girls witnessed history come alive this year as Kamala Harris was inaugurated as the vice president of the United States. For the first time, a woman and person of Black, Asian, and immigrant descent holds the second highest post in our country. Her election has inspired women and girls to stand up in their power.
  • However, while women comprise nearly half of the global population, in many aspects of our society, they experience inequalities that impact their professional and personal ambitions, thus limiting opportunities to let that power shine.
  • These inequality gaps have only been widened as the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic continues to disproportionately impact women in the workforce. One of AT&T’s core values is Stand for Equality and we recognize our responsibility to support and empower women through these times. Learn more HERE

Vince Apruzzese is the president of AT&T Virginia. In this role, Vince helps set and implement AT&T's public policy and philanthropic initiatives in the commonwealth.

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