Where Passion Meets Progress – Expanding Opportunities for the Grand Canyon State

Toni Broberg – President, AT&T Desert States
December 15, 2022
Broadband Access and Affordability

Where Passion Meets Progress – Expanding Opportunities for the Grand Canyon State

People from all over are flocking to Mesa, Arizona to be close to the region’s canyon-carved waterways, bustling downtown and endless trails. Mesa is one of the largest and fastest-growing cities in America – and people aren’t the only thing coming to the city.

Mesa is also growing in access to high-speed fiber connections – connecting city residents to better access to education, jobs and healthcare. And we’re excited to be a part of it.

  • We’re expanding our AT&T Fiber service to connect more than 100,000 homes in and around the Mesa area in 2023.

Throughout my career, it’s been my passion and goal to positively impact my community in whatever capacity I serve. By bringing broadband to communities across the Grand Canyon State, my work at AT&T – along with our continued relationship with Corning Inc. – is helping make that ambition a reality.

Bringing the Heat

We all know Arizona’s deserts are hot and, as my colleague Jeff Luong recently shared, so is the demand for high-speed internet. Meeting this moment requires a reliable network and capable workforce that will deliver connectivity to local communities.

Our fiber network is ready to handle the heat. With capacity to handle large amounts of data and speeds up to 5-Gigs, fiber is the best technology to connect communities for today and tomorrow’s digital needs.

  • Fiber’s high speed and capacity will be increasingly important as we expect U.S. data consumption on our network to increase 5 times between 2021-2025.

We’re excited to continue our long-term relationship with Corning as they plan to build a new fiber optic cable manufacturing plant in nearby Gilbert, AZ.

  • This expansion of manufacturing capacity for optical cable will add 250 high-tech jobs to the local economy.
  • Corning offers strategic investments in optical fiber, cable and connectivity solutions for Arizona communities.
  • Read more about our work with Corning in Fox Business and The Arizona Republic.

As the plant gets up and running, the positive impacts will start pouring into Gilbert, Mesa and the surrounding area. By investing locally, we’re prioritizing an industry-led workforce – meaning we’re not only creating new job opportunities, but also ensuring that the infrastructure can and will be maintained by a skilled local workforce well into the future.

To that effect, we’re continuing to work with Corning to create a Fiber Optic Training Program within Corning facilities in North Carolina. The training program is currently running – with the goal of training 50,000 American workers within 5 years.

Learn more about how we’re investing in those who connect our communities.

And it doesn’t stop there. Bringing fiber to Mesa will help connect our students to the technology they need to thrive.

“It’s really critical to our community thriving to have that access to broadband. It’s so important that business make fiber broadband investments in our community,” said Marlo Loria, Director of Career and Technical Education and Innovative Partnerships for Mesa Public Schools, “that’s why I’m excited that AT&T Fiber is coming to Mesa.”

Hear more from Marlo about the impact AT&T Fiber will have on Mesa students:

Access to broadband means access to opportunity. As someone who believes strongly in a work/life balance and has seen firsthand how many workplaces are rethinking how and when employees collaborate and use technology to get their jobs done, I know this fiber-based broadband will make all the difference for the residents of Mesa – so no matter if they’re in the office, at home or out on the trails, Mesa residents will have the connectivity they need.

Making a Difference

This expansion of fiber connectivity will not only help create better access to education, jobs and healthcare across the city – it will also display how industry-led work-force programs can be a driving force for local communities.

  • A 2021 study found a strong correlation between broadband availability and jobs and GDP growth.1
  • A recent report forecasts a 9.5% compound annual growth rate for the fiber optics market between 2022 and 2028.2

This means more jobs for small towns, increased investments from companies and expanded opportunities for everyone. For Mesa residents and the local workers who will help deliver this fiber, the opportunities and benefits will only multiply.

John Giles, the Mayor of Mesa, said it best:

“In an increasingly virtual world, access to high-speed internet is a key to success for individuals, families and business owners. We welcome AT&T to Mesa as their team delivers fiber connectivity, ultimately creating better access to education, jobs and healthcare for our great city.”

The city of Mesa, AZ came to be thanks to Phoenix, which was once a railroad town. As the railroads expanded and people were connected to new places, jobs and business, new cities popped up along the lines. Now, we have a similar opportunity, not by connecting distant points through physical transportation, but by connecting distant individuals through virtual connection – a new way to broaden the economic possibilities of the region.

For Mesa residents curious as to when AT&T Fiber is available in your area, you can check by visiting: att.com/notifyme

1 Broadband for all: Charting a path to economic growth | Deloitte (April 2021)

2 Demand for Global Fiber Optics Market Size to Hit $7,896 Million by 2028, Exhibit a CAGR of 9.5% | Fiber Optics Industry Trends, Growth, Share, Opportunities, Analysis & Forecast Report by Facts & Factors | Global Newswire (August 2022)