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28 December 2023 · 4 min. read

EPB Named Best Municipal Connectivity Program in U.S. Broadband Awards at U.S. Broadband Summit

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (Dec. 28, 2023) – The inaugural U.S. Broadband Awards hosted by Questex’s Fierce Telecom named EPB Best Municipal Connectivity Program. Awards were featured during Questex’s U.S. Broadband Summit which hosted leaders from service providers, state and federal broadband offices, trade associations and more to address leading topics in the industry.

Alejandro Piñero, Head of Content, Fierce Technology Group at Questex said, “Congratulations to the winners of the inaugural U.S. Broadband Awards. We were extremely impressed with the submissions and look forward to watching them be implemented to connect the underserved and unconnected.”

In 2021, an independent study documented nearly $2.7 billion in community benefit during the first 10 years of EPB’s community-wide fiber optic network and smart grid power distribution system:

  • Creation and retention of 10,000 jobs, about 40% of all jobs created in Hamilton County during the study period.
  • Annual decrease of 55% in outage minutes providing EPB customers with an average of $26.6 million in savings each year by helping them avoid spoilage, lost productivity, and other negative impacts.
  • Attracted $110 million in Smart City research and earned designation as Living Laboratory by US Department of Energy
  • Helped bridge the digital divide for education with the launch of HCS (Hamilton County Schools) EdConnect, high-speed internet service provided at no charge to economically challenged families with K-12 students. Today, the program has grown to serve over 16,000 students – who with their families represent more than 28,000 Chattanooga area residents.

Finalists for the award were selected by a panel of 20 judges based on effectiveness, technical innovation, financial and community impact, individual efforts in driving broadband investment and true innovation in addressing the digital divide.

“Our continuing effort to keep Chattanooga on the cutting edge continues to evolve with the support and vision of our community’s leadership who work closely with us to explore the frontier of how we can best use fiber broadband technology to enhance quality of life in our community,” said EPB President and CEO David Wade. “We deeply appreciate Questex’s Fierce Telecom’s recognition which honors the contributions of so many stakeholders, EPB team members and advocates.”

The U.S. Broadband Awards announced winners from 14 categories, recognizing excellence a competitive group of organizations, people and programs working to connecting the country through broadband services. In the Best Municipal Connectivity Program, EPB was selected among a group of four finalists which also Consolidated Communications and Maine Connectivity Authority, Montgomery County, Md. and Pulse Fiber Internet.

The U.S. Broadband Awards were hosted on Nov. 16 during the U.S. Broadband Summit.


About EPB

With the mission of “enhancing quality of life in our community,” EPB is a municipal utility that delivers world-class energy and connectivity services to Chattanooga, Tennessee, and the surrounding area. In 2010, EPB completed a 100% fiber optic network accessible to all its customers as the basis for launching America’s first community-wide Gig speed internet. The company still operates the world’s fastest community-wide internet service today at speeds up to 25 Gig. EPB also utilizes Chattanooga’s fiber optic network as the communications backbone for the most advanced and highly automated power distribution system in the United States. In 2022, EPB continued its commitment to keeping Chattanooga on the cutting edge by establishing our nation’s first commercially available quantum network—EPB Quantum Network℠ powered by Qubitekk which aligns local job creation efforts with the national priority to accelerate the commercialization of quantum technology.

Since switching the lights on for its first electric customer in 1939, EPB has grown to serve a 600-square-mile service area with cutting-edge infrastructure that integrates power distribution and telecommunications. At the same time, EPB keeps customer benefit at the center of all its efforts, earning recognition from J.D. Power as the #1 Mid-Sized Utility in the South for the last eight consecutive years based on customer satisfaction ratings. Learn more at

About U.S. Broadband Summit

The first ever U.S. Broadband Summit brings together federal funding leaders and state representatives with the wider broadband industry, including fiber operators, MSO's, WISP's, wireless carriers and more, to discuss the future of broadband in the United States. As attention focuses on bridging the growing digital divide, and the need to bring connectivity to the under- and un-served, the industry must come together to address the challenge. There is no golden key to connect everyone, and the U.S. Broadband Summit aims to bring everyone together to discuss how collaboration will lead to a more connected and vibrant society, in benefit of individuals and communities.

About Questex

Questex helps people live better and longer. Questex brings people together in the markets that help people live better: travel, hospitality and wellness; the industries that help people live longer: life science and healthcare; and the technologies that enable and fuel these new experiences. We live in the experience economy – connecting our ecosystem through live events, surrounded by data insights and digital communities. We deliver experience and real results. It happens here.

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