Award recipients.

Position:RURAL TELECOM INDUSTRY MEETING & EXPO - Awards for Jim Daubendiek, Tanya Sullivan and Harry Thomas

Jim Daubendiek accepts the OPASTCO Chairman's Award on behalf of his father, Eugene (Gene) Daubendiek, for his many contributions to OPASCTO and the rural telecom industry during his lifetime. Jim spoke movingly about his father who had recently passed away. Pictured left to right, Jim Daubendiek, Jefferson Telecom (Jefferson, Iowa) and Roger Nishi, Waitsfield and Champlain Valley Telecom (Waitsfield, Vt.) and chairman of OPASTCO's Awards Committee.

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Tanya Sullivan, president of Plus One Strategic Communications, LLC (Arlington, Va.), was awarded the Associate Member Outstanding Achievement Award for her exemplary work with several NTCA member companies to promote the rural telecommunications industry.

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Harry Thomas, board member and president of Venture Communications Cooperative (Highmore, was honored with the Director. Life Achievement Award for his 30 years of service on the company's board of directors. Over the past three decades, Thomas helped the telco tackle diallenges and implement many important changes, including several strategic exchange purchases and diversifying the company with cable TV, IPTV, Internet and fiber to the home (Firm).

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Paul Berg, chief plant officer for Dakota Central Telecommunications (Carrington, N.D.), was honored with the Key Employee Award for his significant contributions to the company's growth and success since 1980. During Berg's tenure as chief plant officer, Dakota Central become a leader in the

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technological improvements during his 26-year tenure.

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Cassie Floret, business support specialist for Periasco Valley Telecommunications (Artesia, N.M.), received the Public Relations Achievement Award for coordinating relief efforts aiding customers in the Little Bear Forest area of Ruidoso, N.M.

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Athena Valdez, marketing manager for Penasco Valley, was honored with the Special Achievement Award for using a childhood concept--a telephone made of...

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