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Member Named to Board of New First Responder Network Authority

Aug 20, 2012

Acting U.S. Commerce Secretary Rebecca Blank today appointed 12 of the nation’s leading experts on public safety and wireless broadband communications, including NAEMT member Kevin McGinnis, to serve on the Board of the First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet). FirstNet is congressionally mandated to establish a nationwide wireless broadband network that enables police, firefighters, emergency services personnel, and others in public safety to better communicate with one another during emergencies and use new technology to improve response time, keep communities safe, and save lives.

The Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012, signed into law in February 2012, created FirstNet, an independent authority within Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA). Congress directed that FirstNet be run by a 15-person Board of Directors, with the Secretary of Homeland Security, the Attorney General, and the Director of the Office of Management and Budget named as permanent members of the Board. Congress charged the Secretary of Commerce with selecting the remaining 12 members.

McGinnis is Chief/CEO, North East Mobile Health Services, the largest paramedic service in Maine. He will serve a term of three years. His career in EMS spans 28 years, and he is a nationally recognized advocate for broadband communications within the EMS community. He serves as the communications technology representative between five national EMS organizations and federal agencies and national organizations impacting public safety video, data, and telecommunications. McGinnis is a member of the Public Safety Alliance and has been very involved in public safety activities, including serving on the Federal Communications Commission’s Emergency Response Interoperability Center Public Safety Advisory Committee; the Communications Interoperability, Security, and Reliability Council; and the P25 Interoperable Communications Standards Steering Committee. Mr. McGinnis was Vice-Chair of the Public Safety Spectrum Trust and is currently Chair of the SAFECOM Executive Program, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security advisory committee on communications interoperability in public safety. He holds degrees from Brown University and Cornell University.

Read more about FirstNet here.