WISPA Names President, CEO

WISPA has hired David M. Zumwalt as President and CEO of the Association, effective June 1. He replaces Claude Aiken, who stepped down on April 30. Zumwalt will oversee the Association’s strategic and daily affairs, including staff for advocacy, membership, policy, and events.

WISPA’s Board of Directors reviewed dozens of qualified candidates who applied for the position.

“We are excited to have chosen David to lead WISPA,” said Todd Harpest, WISPA’s Chairman of the Board. “It is a crucial time in the industry, and his history of success in several different leadership roles will serve our members during this unprecedented time of broadband growth, government funding, and increased private investment.  David is simply the best person to guide our members to the tremendous opportunities at stake.  We cannot wait to get started.”

Prior to accepting the position, Zumwalt served as the Chief Operating Officer of Broadband VI, a major ISP in the U.S. Virgin Islands offering fixed wireless and fiber-connected services, where he was recruited to prepare the company for scale.

He held full profit and liability responsibility, helped guide the company to its historic $84.5 million FCC Connect USVI win, and provided operations leadership during and after its acquisition by a unit of Liberty Latin America late last year.

Earlier, he served as the CEO/Executive Director of the University of the Virgin Islands Research and Technology Park Corporation (RTPark), an instrumentality of the USVI government formed to establish and grow a vibrant knowledge-based sector in the territory’s economy.  He led policy, workforce investment, infrastructure, and market outreach initiatives and guided RTPark to become an example of a sustainable three-way partnership with private sector, governmental and university stakeholders.

Zumwalt also founded and served as Chairman and CEO of CNet Inc., a provider of RF engineering and operational support system software and services to the worldwide wireless communications industry, securing significant customer relationships in 40 countries.

He has provided growth strategy services spanning private sector, public sector and academic initiatives, engaging as a board-level advisor working closely with management teams, stakeholders, capital partners and governmental/regulatory counterparts.

A graduate of Rice University, he has been named a Fellow of the Radio Club of America and is a licensed professional engineer in Texas.

WISPA represents the interests of the evolving internet service provider that deploys fixed wireless, fiber and hybrid networks.  WISPA’s members range from small innovative entrepreneurs to large providers, solutions providers, and manufacturers.  WISPA members bring critical internet access to more than 9 million Americans, many of whom reside and work in unserved and underserved areas. It also provides access to urban, suburban, and tribal areas of the country.

WISPA members typically focus on rapid deployment models providing affordable, reliable, and sustainable broadband service for primary and backup Internet connections.

“WISPA is a revered brand in the ISP industry,” Zumwalt said. “WISPA’s active advocacy efforts extend the reach of members at the federal level and within state and regional jurisdictions. I am delighted to be joining WISPA and look forward to leading it as our membership, staff and Board work to advance our Association’s mission.

“Broadband service continues to transform communities and markets, and all Americans deserve high-quality broadband no matter where they may live or work,” Zumwalt continued. “WISPA’s members are, and have long been, the front-line responders delivering ‘Broadband Without Boundaries.’”