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Dear Editor:

I’ve worked in health care consulting for 20 years. Clients demand I bring them best practices, a sense of urgency and tangible results – every day. In Chaffee County government, citizens expect no less, and that’s why I support Kimberly Parker for commissioner.

Kimberly implemented business and technology solutions in both private and public sectors for 13 years. She knows that reputation and integrity are everything – just talking gets you nowhere. County residents face many issues, but one sets Kimberly Parker immediately apart from her opponent – reliable, high-speed broadband. Not waiting for an election, Kimberly is already building a coalition so Chaffee County can move beyond multiple failures of internet service that threatened our residents and caused locals to lose valuable sales.

When asked, she said “I am working with Sheriff Spezze and have spoken with Colorado Central Telecom and Bob Fifer (Colorado rural broadband champion and appointee to the Federal Communications Commission’s Intergovernmental Advisory Committee). We discuss infrastructure, regulations and public-private partnerships to make sure we have redundant and reliable internet and cellular service in Chaffee County. I support the county broadband ballot initiative and will evaluate options once we know we can join other counties and regain local control of our broadband.”

Kimberly believes that, besides a public safety issue, reliable broadband service is a utility that rural residents depend on to remain here. It brings entrepreneurs and keeps young people here with higher paying prospects. In technology, standing still, you’re obsolete. Chaffee County is falling behind.

We need someone to lead a county-wide drive for excellence in broadband – someone with a can-do, will-do attitude. That’s Kimberly. Chaffee County can be a model for rural communities with high-speed broadband serving every resident and with county services delivered efficiently. Choose someone already in high gear, choose Kimberly Parker.

Merrell Bergin