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Access to Affordable and Reliable Broadband is Critical to Equitable Economic Development


Past consumer and business surveys have illuminated challenges with affordable, reliable access to the internet, particularly on Aquidneck Island (Newport County), but have not been definitive.


The pandemic has exacerbated the statewide need for reliable, affordable high-speed broadband for remote learning, telework, telehealth, e-government, and e-commerce. Connect Greater Newport has convened a coalition of stakeholders (Connect Greater Newport Broadband Coalition) to oversee a short-term planning effort to improve and expand access to quality broadband in the Greater Newport region and possibly statewide. This program is funded by philanthropic support from the van Beuren Charitable Foundation.

Greater Newport Broadband Coalition: Invited Members


  • Jeff Diehl, Rhode Island Infrastructure Bank

  • Daniela Fairchild, Commerce RI 

  • Stuart Freiman, Rhode Island Emergency Management Agency

  • Scott Humphreys, Greater Newport Chamber of Commerce

  • Rhonda Mitchell, Newport Housing Authority

  • Michael Ricci, Central Falls School Department 

  • Elizabeth Tanner, Department of Business Regulation 

  • Matt Wainwright, Town of Middletown