TelePOWER 2019: Utility Telecommunication Infrastructure and Service Summit

TelePOWER 2019: Utility Telecommunication Infrastructure and Service Summit

September 10-11, 2019 | Denver, CO

TelePOWER 2019 is here to build a more connected future for utilities’ internal and external communication networks. This summit will seek to establish and enhance important business partnerships by producing ­a community of electric power utilities, telecom carriers, manufactures, and federal/local government agencies. Industry leaders and energy experts will guide attendees through best practices and trending topics such as:

  • Advancing both public and private communication network reliability
  • Cross-industry partnership development
  • Emerging technology utilization
  • Financing utility telecommunication projects
  • Collecting and analyzing data, designing and implementing infrastructure and equipment
  • Applying regulations and legislation to existing and developmental communication processes

Attendees will be able to follow industry-led discussions, attend hands-on workshops, participate in safety demonstrations and technology-driven experiences, speak one-on-one with an industry experts, and enjoy business development receptions. Participants will attend interactive sessions on major influencing agents in the telecommunications industry such as: public and private network solutions, next generation networks, economic development, spectrum usage, broadband and fiber deployment, wireless connections and joint use management, asset management, new technology applications, and business essentials for utility telecommunication endeavors. At TelePOWER 2019, attendees will cultivate advantageous connections, improve industry-wide communication and highlight best practices through open question and answer sessions, diverse panel discussions and detailed case studies.

Learning Outcomes

  • Define communication network types and appropriate application
  • Determine service strategies and execute business model planning
  • Project management for public and private networks
  • Initiate and cultivate solution-based vendor partnerships
  • Overview joint use management and the importance of safe small cell application
  • Comply with regulatory agencies overseeing both regulate and deregulated telecom networks
  • Scale and optimize telecommunications networks for increase productivity and control
  • Implement utility telecom asset management processes
  • Secure cyber and physical access points for both public and private networks
  • Explain key economic influencers of utility telecommunications networks
  • Collect and automate key data points and their retrieval for network optimization and productivity
  • Explore the potential of new technological advancements that require reliable communication networks



EUCI has been accredited as an Authorized Provider by the International Association for Continuing Education and Training (IACET).  In obtaining this accreditation, EUCI has demonstrated that it  complies with the ANSI/IACET Standard which is recognized internationally as a standard of good practice. As a result of their Authorized Provider status, EUCI is authorized to offer IACET CEUs for its programs that qualify under the ANSI/IACET Standard.

EUCI is authorized by IACET to offer 1.2 CEUs for this event and 0.4 CEUs for each workshop.


Instructional Methods

This program will use PowerPoint presentations and panel discussions, as well as active participation.

Requirements for Successful Completion of Program

Participants must sign in/out each day, be in attendance for the entirety of the course


Tuesday, September 10, 2019

8:00 – 8:30 a.m. :: Registration and Continental Breakfast

8:30 – 9:15 a.m. :: Private Wireless Standard Networks – Securing Your Communications Network for the Future

Electric utilities, and other mission critical industries, need standard technology options to deploy highly reliable communications networks on private spectrum. While wireless standards exist for broadband spectrum, until recently there has not been a standard technology that could be used on spectrum less than 1.25 MHz. Most critical infrastructure entities do not have access to wide band channels which leaves them with only proprietary technology solutions or reliance upon commercial carriers which do not have the reliability and availability for mission critical applications.

As a solution to this challenge, a grass roots effort was undertaken in 2015 by utilities, manufacturers, the WiMAX Forum, Utilities Technology Council (UTC), and the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) to create a modification to the IEEE 802.16 standard. This standard was ratified and published in October, 2017 and is now known globally as IEEE 802.16s. IEEE 802.16s is a narrow channel amendment to the IEEE 802.16 standard. IEEE 802.16s allows operation in channel sizes from 100 KHz up to 1.25 MHz. This presentation will cover the history, highlights, features, and case studies of IEEE 802.16s and how it can be used to build a private, wireless network that will allow your network to scale for increased data and security requirements over time.

Kathy Nelson, Business Development Manager, ONDAS

9:15 – 10:00 a.m. :: Navigating Public vs. Private Network Solutions for Utilities Communication Strategies

Mobile communications and wireless networks are mission critical assets for utilities. Solutions for both public and private communication strategies vary based on how the organizations operate whether it be a renewable energy projects, distributed resources or demand management strategies. The public and private network solutions for utilities session will discuss decision drivers for network solutions such as deployment and operation costs, physical and cyber security, technology standards and regulations like IEEE 802.16s. It will also take an in-depth look at the increasingly rate based investments that utilities are making, like the implementation of cloud-based software solutions, smart metering infrastructure, and the deployment of private fiber.

Kathy Nelson, Business Development Manager, ONDAS

Jeff Sheldon, Partner, Levine, Blaszak, Block & Boothby, LLP

10:00 – 10:15 a.m. :: Morning Break

10:15 – 11:30 a.m. :: Cultivating Solution Based Partnerships   

How do electric utilities build and maintain vendor and supplier relationships that consistently drive business development goals? There are myriad of solutions for the successful implementation and operation public and private networks. Follow different utilities and their journey to success through innovative partnerings and solution-based project management.

Sonny Nunez, Manager – Utility Relations, Crown Castle

11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. :: Applying Joint Use and its Management

As part of that effort, the FCC’s Broadband Deployment Advisory Committee (BDAC) is providing recommendations to streamline the pole attachment process. Simultaneously, to support the upcoming deployment of 5G wireless networks, state legislatures across the country are considering legislation to pre-empt municipal control over small cell wireless attachments, with at least 8 states having passed new laws.  While these changes will impact pole-owners’ and attachers’ Joint-Use and Pole Attachment processes in ways large and small, some fundamental truths of the pole attachment process remain.

Sean Knowles, Mclean Engineering

Edward P. Bieging Jr, Consultant Facility Attachments, Xcel Energy

Claire Evans, Partner, Wiley Rein LLP

12:30 – 1:30 p.m. :: Group Luncheon

1:30 – 2:45 p.m. :: Emerging Legislation and Regulatory Compliance

Regulatory agencies like the Federal Communications Council (FCC) and NERC influence communication infrastructure and serviced provisions to create standard practicing methods for implementing and operating both public and private telecommunications networks. With this session, gain a better understating of the FCC’s 499 requirements, NERC CIP version 5, the FCC’s third report and order, infrastructure and equipment regulations, the effects of net neutrality on utility communication networks and spectrum purchasing, use and management. Take this time to dive into how to work with our governing agencies to create a more secure and reliable future for utility operations.

Chris Huther, Partner, Wiley Rein, LLP

Matthew Butler, Manager – Real Estate & Regulatory, COMET & Small Cell Strategy, Verizon Wireless

2:45 – 3:00 p.m. Afternoon Break

3:00 – 4:00 p.m. :: Securing Communication Networks: Security and Privacy Concerns for Electric Utility Telecom Networks

With increased risk for critical data-leaks, hacktivists penetration and substation breaches, public and private networks require both physical and cyber security. NERC CIP version 5 tells us the protocols for a breach, but who in your organization monitors the security footage and data, and where is such information stored? How do utilities secure both physical and cyber access points? Major components like SCADA and equipment security and sensitive customer data are at the age of requiring an “always on” cloud-based service security solutions, such as threat mapping and cyber and physical risk systems.

Caroline England, Optimum Networking

4:00 – 5:00 p.m. :: Designing, Engineering, Constructing Utility Telecom Infrastructure

With increased risk for critical data-leaks, hacktivists penetration and substation breaches, public and private networks require both physical and cyber security. NERC CIP version 5 tells us the protocols for a breach, but who in your organization monitors the security footage and data, and where is such information stored? How do utilities secure both physical and cyber access points? Major components like SCADA and equipment security and sensitive customer data are at the age of requiring an “always on” cloud-based service security solutions, such as threat mapping and cyber and physical risk systems.

Max Moriarty, Marketing Specialist, SiteTracker

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

8:00 – 8:30 a.m. :: Continental Breakfast

8:30 – 9:30 a.m. :: Managing and Maintaining Utility Telecom Assets

How do you prepare utility’s existing infrastructure to scale for future upgrades and communication network add-ons? How do certain organizations start from scratch? Join us to discuss solution drivers such as network types, equipment costs, infrastructure regulations from planning all the way to implementation. Understand new developments like distributed antenna systems indoor, enterprise small cells and wide IP deployment.

William Ginn, Director of Business Development, Tilson Tech

9:30 – 10:30 a.m. :: Influencing Economic Development

Utility communication advancements can improve economic development of rural communities, both publicly and investor owned. This session will review case studies regarding the implementation of telemedicine, smart agriculture, remote learning as well as the process of bringing fiber to the home by cooperatives and municipals throughout the rural U.S. to bridge the digital divide. It will also review business and resident retention for IOUs building and maintaining metropolitan area networks or large area networks. How are smart cities that work from utility telecom networks driving community development? What are major site selection drivers and attractions for businesses into your community such as political, regulatory, financial?

Carrie Kelly, Project Manager, Southern Company

10:30 – 11:00 a.m. :: Networking Break

11:00 – 12:00 p.m. :: Utilities, Consumers, and Telecommunications:  Where Do We Go From Here?

Utilities are facing an ever-increasing need for telecommunication services to support network needs.  At the same time, utility consumers are demanding service for “smart” applications for their homes and communities, and also to meet their own needs for faster and more reliable telecommunication services.  How (and should) utilities address this diverse set of needs?  What are the opportunities, the synergies, and the challenges of expanding utility communication networks beyond the traditional use case to support the needs of their customers?  This interactive session will explore the considerations for utilities considering consumer uses of their networks, including practical, financial, and political questions.

Elin Kats, General Counsel, Tilson Tech

12:00 p.m. :: Conference Adjourns


Pre-Conference Workshop 1

Pre-Conference Workshop 2

Firmly Anchored in Midair: The Intersection of 5G Technology Deployment with Infrastructure and Government Policy

Monday, September 9, 2019

The workshop will blend opportunities emerging in 5G technology from a wireless carrier perspective on infrastructure deployment flavored by the evolving regulatory climate at the FCC, state, and local levels of government. “Given” scenarios will be presented allowing participants the exercise to brainstorm project management strategies for new business development. The goal of the workshop is to collectively confront the external forces impacting the industry, assess priorities for implementation, and evaluate inherent incremental opportunities to maximize return on investment. 

Please bring a laptop for internet access during this workshop.


8:00 – 8:30 a.m. :: Registration & Continental Breakfast

8:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. :: Workshop Timing


Past, Present, & Future of the Wireless Communications

  • Frequency spectrum and federal regulation
  • How the cellular industry was initiated
  • The role of site acquisition and permitting
  • Project management
  • Wireless site owners and managers
  • Current market conditions
  • Future trends

Wireless System Engineering

  • Coverage and capacity sites
  • Macro and micro cell sites
  • DAS and small cells
  • Backhaul and fronthaul
  • Permanent and temporary facilities
  • Facility components
  • Search area design

Site Search Due Diligence

  • Evaluation of the search area assignment
  • RF suitability, zone-ability, constructability, and lease-ability
  • Comparison of alternative candidate feasibility analytics
  • Search area reports and site candidate Information packages
  • The project team
  • Site selection

Site Development

  • Project Preparation
  • Site visit by project team
  • Title insurance
  • Site design
  • Collocations

Space Rights Agreements

  • Initial space rights
  • Leasing concepts
  • Collocation agreements
  • Lease provisions
  • Purchase contracts
  • Miscellaneous agreements
  • Space rights documentation

Local Permit Rights

  • Permit applications
  • Planning staff
  • Community due diligence
  • Local governing bodies



John M. Rowe, President, Communications Real Estate, Inc. and Owner, Telecom Birddogs, LLC

Mr. Rowe has over forty years of experience in the telecommunications industry. He is currently the owner of Telecom Birddogs, LLC, located in Centennial, CO, which specializes in the training and development of site acquisition and permitting consultants to the telecommunications industry. He is also the President of Communications Real Estate, Inc., a consultancy that has provided site acquisition and permitting services in the telecommunications industry since 1993. Prior to 1993 was President of Telecommunications Development Corp., worked as a freelancer, and got his start in antenna site infrastructure in 1980 working for MCI Telecommunications, and then Hughes Communications Satellite Services, Inc., and Teleport Denver. After graduating from Iowa State University in 1974 John was sales representative for the Electronic Division of Belden Cable in NYC, Northern New Jersey, and Upstate NY.

In 1983, Mr. Rowe received his M.S. in Telecommunications from Colorado University. His Thesis Project was assembled from notes used to train agents at MCI to acquire space rights and local permit rights for MCI’s nationwide microwave network.

Telecommunications 101

Monday, September 9, 2019

The Telecommunications 101 workshop for non-engineering professionals will provide an overview of the history of the telecommunications industry and the application of that industry to utility communication networks. Attendees will discuss the new technologies, regulatory impacts, and market trends regarding utility telecommunication technologies. We will define industry buzz words and acronyms, explore case studies about public and private networks for utilities communication and the emergence of new technologies like the application of 5G network equipment to existing utility infrastructure.

What are utility options for both wholesale and retail communication services? Consumers and employees are demanding new and faster ways of communicating. The focus on application integration for communication technology and the impact of the “cloud” is changing the way electric utilities do business and the technology required to support it.  Who’s responsible for what?  Why and how is “real-time communications” different from data communications?  Join us to gain clarity on today’s confusing landscape and prepare to set your sights on the Next Generation Technologies. 

Learning Outcomes

  • Define the basic elements of telecommunications and their impact on today’s communication trends
  • Build utility business case for implementing new technologies and collaboration processes to improve both internal and external utility communications networks
  • Apply knowledge of infrastructure fundamentals to support advanced technologies such as Fiber to the Premise (FTTP), Wave-Division Multiplexing, and the latest in wireless technologies such as 5G and future next generation networks and small cell applications
  • Define and differentiate between network types like LANs, MANs, and WANs and the role in connecting users and services
  • Explore the current technology options such as the application of EVs, IoT, AR, VR and SaaS solutions for data management, cyber security and operational functions
  • Identify the FCC actions and other local and state regulatory impacts on utility telecommunication networks



12:00 – 12:30 p.m. :: Workshop Registration

12:30 – 4:00 p.m. :: Workshop Timing

Introductions, Course Plan, and Expectations

  • Telephony Fundamentals
  • Historical viewpoint
  • Public Switched Telephone Network
  • Basic Telephony – Analog
  • Digital Telecommunications
  • Voice over IP (VoIP)

Physical Networking

  • LAN Cables and Categories
  • Fiber Optics
  • Wave-Division Multiplexing: CWDM and DWDM
  • Metropolitan Area Networks (MANs)
  • Fiber to the Premise (FTTP)
  • FTTN & Broadband Coax to the Premise
  • Cable Modem Termination System
  • DSL Access Multiplexer
  • Wireless

Unified Communications

  • The Fuzzy Definitions
  • System Architecture and Convergence
  • UC beyond IP Telephony
  • Enhanced Systems
  • Analytics and Reporting
  • Speech Analytics
  • Leading UC Manufacturers
  • Leading Network Services Providers/ Carriers
  • Leading UCaaS Providers

Latest Generation Technologies and Developments

  • Marketplace Trends
  • SD-WAN
  • The Internet of Things (IoT) and 5G Wireless
  • Communications Platform as a Service (CPaaS)
  • Virtual Realty Impacts and Applications
  • Intelligent Low-Voltage Lighting
  • Expansion of the Internet Cloud
  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Security Challenges and Tools
  • FCC Actions and Pending Issues
  • Next Generation E911 Systems
  • The Future of Telecom



J.R. Simmons/ Principal Consultant/ COMgroup, Inc.

J.R. Simmons has over 40 years of experience in the telecommunications systems industry, including over 30 years as a consultant providing strategic planning, design, analysis, and implementation management skills.  He is considered a thought leader in unified communications and collaboration technologies. J.R. is the owner and Principal Consultant of COMgroup, Inc., which is located in Kirkland Washington.  COMgroup is one of the most widely respected independent telecommunications consulting firms in the nation and a recognized leader for telecommunication systems design and communications infrastructure consulting projects.  

As an industry expert J.R. has provided expert testimony in several legal cases.  He contributes to two of the most respected industry web sites (No Jitter and BC Strategies) and frequently gives speeches on a wide variety of telecommunications management and technology subjects.  He taught advanced telecommunications courses for a Community College Certificate program and continues to teach via independent seminars, and educational programs such as this one offered by EUCI.

J.R.’s experience includes work on complex telephone systems and call centers, cabling infrastructure and layer one electronics, and both local and wide area networks.  His current projects tend to focus on strategic planning and business process analysis, but also include data networking design, systems analysis, unified communications, and contact centers. 

COMgroup works with organizations of all sizes with increasingly complex technical environments. As a teacher at heart, J.R. has a passion of sharing his knowledge of trends and emerging technology in an effort to educate others and assist his customers in making the best decisions.  J.R.’s team are experts in all facets of voice and data communications; they provide professional services that incorporate multiple technology disciplines including:

  • Strategic planning
  • Functional and technical requirements definition
  • System design
  • Infrastructure communication design and cabling coordination
  • Contact Center design and operational improvements
  • Carrier services including Telecom Expense Management
  • Telecom facility/utility audit
  • Project management services


Edward P. Bieging Jr, Consultant Facility Attachments, Xcel Energy

William Ginn, Director of Business Development, Tilson Tech

Matthew Butler, Manager – Real Estate & Regulatory, COMET & Small Cell Strategy, Verizon Wireless

Max Moriarty, Marketing Specialist, SiteTracker

Caroline England, Account Manager, Optimum Networking

Claire Evans, Partner, Wiley Rein LLP

Sonny Nunez, Manager – Utility Relations, Crown Castle

Chris Huther, Partner, Wiley Rein, LLP

Carrie Kelly, Project Manager, Southern Company

Sean Knowles, VP Business Development, Mclean Engineering

Kathy Nelson, Business Development, ONDAS

Elin Kats, General Counsel, Tilson Tech

Jeff Sheldon, Partner, Levine, Blaszak, Block & Boothby, LLP

Keith Williams, Telecommunications Manager, Southern Company        


Denver Marriott South at Park Meadows

10345 Park Meadows Dr

Littleton, CO 80124

Reserve your room:

please call 1-303-925-0004

Room Block Reserved For:

Nights of September 10 – 12, 2019

Room rate through EUCI:

$184.00 single or double plus applicable taxes
Make your reservations prior to August 18, 2019.

Venue Information

Getting to and from the hotel:


Dining options


Event Standard RateAttendees


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