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New Mexico Governor Appoints Broadband Office Adviser

New Mexico Gov. Lujan Grisham has named Matt Schmit the broadband adviser of the state’s recently formed Office of Broadband Access and Expansion to coordinate broadband efforts across the state.

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In a series of new appointees, New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham named Matt Schmit the broadband adviser of the Office of Broadband Access and Expansion.

The office, created this year through Senate Bill 93, has been tasked with creating a three-year strategic plan to help coordinate Internet expansion projects between state and tribal entities and private companies.

Schmit will lead the development of this plan when he officially takes the post in December.

Schmit brings years of public-sector experience in this space. Most recently, he has served as director of the Illinois Office of Broadband since 2019, where he administered $400 million in grant funding and led the state’s digital equity and inclusion program. Before that position, he worked at the University of Minnesota in various roles.

He served as a member of the Minnesota Senate between 2013 and 2016, where he focused on broadband expansion in rural areas. During his time there, he led a statewide outreach and engagement tour to acquire public input on broadband that led to the creation of the state broadband office.

“Recent federal investment in broadband gives states, local communities and Internet service providers an unprecedented opportunity to close the digital divide through universal access, adoption assistance and skills building,” Schmit said in the release.

This announcement comes on the heels of the administration identifying high-speed broadband as a high priority for New Mexico during this year’s State of the State address.