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  TeleTruth Board of Advisors: Jeff Ritter
After managing a computer training enterprise for two years, and serving several more years a technologist/visionary for a management consulting firm catering to Fortune 500 companies, Jeff Ritter entered public service with a single intent: to structure the business climate in Oregon in step with the Information Age so that others like him could live and work anywhere in the state. In pursuit of this goal, he was appointed Statewide Coordinator for Telecommunications, Industrial and Regional Projects from 1993-2000 (Oregon Community and Economic Development Department). During his tenure, Ritter established information-centric practices and implemented a number of projects directly responsible for creating over 2,000 jobs. He initiated and staffed the Oregon Telecommunications Forum, a statewide grass-roots effort sponsored by the Office of the Governor and later mandated by the Oregon Legislature. The process involved over 1,500 residents statewide in a goal-setting and planning framework that served to raise awareness of issues relative to telecommunications.
After detractors shut down the Telecommunications Forum, Ritter sponsored SmartOregon, a statewide information technology think tank. SmartOregon's greatest accomplishment was a research product consisting of over 60 case studies (2 per county) focused on business models that leveraged information technology for competitive success. The project, which was implemented prior to the Dot Com boom of the late 90's, carried with it a restrictive mandate (imposed by Ritter)-to showcase technology consumers, rather than producers (hardware manufacturers, software producers, telecommunications companies, ISPs and consultants were exempted). Although many stakeholders felt this to be an impossible task, appropriate case studies were ultimately identified. The enlightened awareness stemming from the distribution of the case studies spawned a new wave of community interest. The momentum primed the entire state for forthcoming telecommunications development opportunities, many of which became models unique to the Pacific Northwest.

On January 1, 2000, Ritter established Technomethods Corporation (, a telecommunications consulting firm dedicated to leveraging telecommunications opportunities for communities. Technomethods developed strategic planning methods and options for implementing better municipal and regional telecommunications services. To date, Technomethods has implemented telecommunications planning and alternative infrastructure projects spanning the states of Washington, Oregon, California, and Nevada.

One of Ritter's most significant accomplishments was the Oregon Open Access Fiber Route: a stretch of fiber optic cable providing high-speed connectivity alternatives for 18 communities located near the 500-mile route. The new infrastructure represented a $35 million investment for the communities and directly resulted in $2.5 million worth of dark fiber assets transferred to a consortia of community partners. In 2000, the project was recognized as the best telecommunications infrastructure project in the country through a competition sponsored by AOL and the National Association of Small Communities (NCSA). The project was also chosen as one of 12 best practices featured in "Technology and Grit at the Grassroots, Information Technology, Community Engagement, and Jobs in Distressed Rural Communities," a guide that was published in June, 2002, jointly by the Economic Development Administration and the NCSA.

In 2002, Technomethods won a competitive bid to implement the Klamath Technology Center, a project funded by the Economic Development Administration and USDA Rural Development. The Center, scheduled to be online by the second quarter of 2003, is envisioned as a hub and anchor point for technology access, open access computer learning, and further grass-roots telecommunications development that will serve to generate new synergies for economic expansion among information sectors.

Through Technomethods, Jeff Ritter continues to promote community-driven alternatives to incumbent monopoly telecommunications infrastructure. Success, he has discovered, has been the strongest weapon in his personal war against the oppressive RBOC machines. His favorite quote: "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed people can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has." -Mararet Meade, Anthropologist.



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