Laura Breeden joined NTIA in May 2009 to lead the public computing and sustainable broadband adoption components of the Broadband Technology Opportunities Program, a $4.7 billion competitive grant program funded under the Recovery Act. BTOP is designed to promote the construction of new infrastructure for broadband communications in unserved and underserved areas, make public access computer centers and training available to vulnerable populations, and promote broadband adoption by groups that are under-represented among broadband subscribers. Under her leadership, BTOP awarded more than $450 million for projects to make 21st century computer and Internet services more available, affordable, and useful.
Ms. Breeden previously served at NTIA from 1994 to 1996 as the founding director of the Technology Opportunities Program, a forerunner of BTOP, where she supervised the award of more than $60 million in matching grants for innovative projects that used the Internet to improve public sector services.
Since 1983, Ms. Breeden has worked in the public, private, and non-profit sectors to advance the use of modern digital communications for the public good. Among her accomplishments are directing one of the first associations of Internet service providers, heading the project that created the New England Academic and Research Network, consulting to universities and foundations throughout the U.S. on technology projects, and creating a national technical assistance and evaluation program for the 400 community computing centers funded by the U. S. Department of Education from 2000 to 2005.
Ms. Breeden holds a BA in Urban Studies and Education from Oberlin College.