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CTIA names new chairman

CTIA-The Wireless Association has announced the newly elected officers and executive committee members for the wireless industry trade group.

Former Vice Chairman Robert Dotson, T-Mobile USA's president/CEO, has been elected as the new Chairman. Mr. Dotson succeeds Verizon Wireless's CEO Lowell McAdam as CTIA Chairman and will assume the position in January 2009.

"Robert has been on our board for several years -- he was the vice chairman and he was chosen by his colleagues to be the chairman based on a vote by our board," said Joe Farren, spokesman for CTIA, Washington. "His colleagues simply saw him as a tremendous leader who would be a fantastic chairman."

The position is charged with promoting public policies and initiatives that benefit all wireless consumers, with a focus on enhancing and expanding the wireless experience in the U.S.

Other CTIA elected officers announced at today's executive committee meeting include AT&T Mobility president/CEO Ralph de la Vega as vice-chairman, Asurion CEO Bret Comolli as treasurer, Centennial Communications CEO Michael Small as secretary and Verizon Wireless CEO Lowell McAdam as chairman emeritus.

CTIA also elected 36 returning board members for 2009.

The following are new members to the executive committee: Clearwire Corp. CEO Ben Wolff, TracFone Wireless Inc. president/CEO F.J. Pollack and U.S. Cellular president/CEO Jack Rooney.

"In 2008 the mobile industry was enormously successful -- it was the year wireless networks opened up," Mr. Farren said.

"Third-party applications and software developers made inroads, carriers made numerous changes to contract terms and conditions, we had a very successful 700 megahertz auction and we saw the introduction of many new highly innovative handsets into the marketplace," he said.

"By virtually every measurement -- voice usage, text messaging, data usage, investment in networks -- it was a very successful year. In many ways, the industry reinvented itself in 2008."

Despite the slowing economy, the CTIA remains optimistic for the mobile space.

"In 2009 we expect more of the same, in that everything in the industry flows from the fact that wireless is an enormously competitive space," Mr. Farren said.

"You see that with regards to the explosion of product offerings, and there's nothing on the horizon to suggest that it will stop," he said.

"Wireless is in a better position than most industries with regard to the economic situation. There's nothing to suggest that the innovation, which is driven by competition, will slow down."