MTA News Bytes

October 13, 2017

In This Issue

Meetings and Events

MTA Updates

Action Items

>> 2018 MTA Annual Convention Call for Proposals

Peer Group Bulletin

>> Don't Miss These 2017 MTA Peer Group Investment Opportunities!

>> Upcoming Peer Group Events

Safety Corner

>> National Fire Prevention Week

People and Companies

>> Arvig Named One of Prairie Business Magazine’s 50 Best Places to Work

>> CTC Honored with Business Excellence Award through Brainerd Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce

MTA Staff

MTA President/CEO:
Brent J. Christensen
Event Planners:
Julie Cygan Diamond
Ashley Crunstedt
Carissa Wolf
Member Services:
Jeanne DeMartino

Anna Wrisky
Administrative Assistant:
Anne Christensen

Stay up-to-date on daily happenings at the MTA offices by following us on Facebook. From peer group meetings to annual conferences and everything in between, get the scoop on what’s happening at our offices!




Meetings and Events

November 20, 2017: Administrative Assistant Peer Group Fall Conference
AmericInn Lodge & Suites, Wahpeton, ND

December 6-7, 2017: Plant Manager & Superintendent Peer Group Meeting
Holiday Inn & Suites, St. Cloud

March 26-28, 2018: MTA Annual Convention & Trade Show
Hyatt Regency Minneapolis

March 18-20, 2019: MTA Annual Convention & Trade Show
Hyatt Regency Minneapolis

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MTA Updates


2018 MTA Annual Convention Call for Proposals
Deadline for Submission is Today, October 13, 2017 at 5pm CDT!

2018 MTA Convention Call for Proposals

We are now planning for the Annual Convention and Trade Show, March 26-28, 2018, at the Hyatt Regency in Minneapolis. Our convention offers you an opportunity to talk with the (estimated 1,100) MTA attendees face-to-face.

Request for Proposals

There are additional opportunities for you to demonstrate your knowledge and expertise to all attendees. We are requesting submissions of speakers and presenters for our breakout sessions and luncheons.

Breakout Session Requirements

The 2018 MTA Convention will have 14 breakout sessions of 50 minutes each and an Issues Update Luncheon. Sessions will be presented on Monday, March 26 and Tuesday, March 27, 2018. No sales pitches, please.

>> Submit a Proposal

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Peer Group Bulletin
All MTA members are welcome to join a Peer Group

Don't Miss These 2017 MTA Peer Group Investment Opportunities!

MTA’s core purpose is to enhance the success and viability of its telecommunications industry members. You are an important part of helping us fulfill this mission. Here is your opportunity to maximize the impact of your event sponsorships for 2017. Stay tuned for 2018 opportunities, available soon.

Download the 2017 Peer Group Investment Opportunities for full details

Sponsor a Peer Group: Sign Up Online!

Upcoming Peer Group Events

Administrative Assistant Peer Group 2017 Fall Conference

November 20, 2017 | AmericInn Lodge & Suites, Wahpeton, North Dakota

Rates: $99 per person

AmericInn Lodge & Suites
2029 210 Drive | Wahpeton, North Dakota  58075
Call 701-642-8365; ask for Allison. Room block name: MN Administrative Assistants Peer Group

>> Full Details and Registration

Plant Manager & Superintendent Peer Group Meeting

December 6-7, 2017 | Holiday Inn & Suites, St. Cloud, Minnesota 

Rates: $150 members or nonmembers

Holiday Inn & Suites
75 S 37th Ave. | St. Cloud, Minnesota  5630

Room block ends November 24, 2017 — call 1-800-315-2621 to make reservations.

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Safety Corner

National Fire Prevention Week

Fire Prevention Week, which this year is October 8-14, was established to commemorate the Great Chicago Fire, the October 8-9, 1871 tragedy that killed more than 250 people, left 100,000 homeless, destroyed more than 17,400 structures and burned more than 2,000 acres.

According to popular legend, the fire broke out after a cow — belonging to Mrs. Catherine O'Leary — kicked over a lamp, setting afire first the barn, then the whole city. People have blamed the Great Chicago Fire on the cow and Mrs. O'Leary for more than 130 years.

The great fire almost certainly started near the barn where Mrs. O'Leary kept her five milking cows. But there is no proof that O'Leary was in the barn when the fire broke out — or that a jumpy cow sparked the blaze. Mrs. O'Leary herself swore that she'd been in bed early that night, and that the cows were also tucked in for the evening.

While the Great Chicago Fire was the best-known blaze to start during this fiery two-day stretch, it wasn't the biggest. That distinction goes to the Peshtigo Fire, the most devastating forest fire in American history. The fire, which also occurred on October 8, 1871, roared through Northeast Wisconsin, burning down 16 towns, killing 1,152 people, and scorching 1.2 million acres before it ended.

Home Fire Facts:

  • Half of home fire deaths result from fires reported between 11 p.m. and 7 a.m. Only one in five home fires were reported during these hours.
  • One-quarter of home fire deaths were caused by fires that started in the bedroom. Another quarter resulted from fires in the living room, family room or den.
  • Three out of five home fire deaths happen from fires in homes with no smoke alarms or no working smoke alarms.
  • In 2015, U.S. fire departments responded to an estimated 365,500 home structure fires. These fires caused 2,560 deaths, 11,075 civilian injuries, and $7 billion in direct damage.
  • On average, seven people die in U.S. home fires per day.
  • Cooking equipment is the leading cause of home fire injuries, followed by heating equipment.
  • Smoking materials are the leading cause of home fire deaths.
  • Most fatal fires kill one or two people.
  • During 2010-2014, roughly one of every 338 households reported a home fire per year.

Escape planning

  • According to an NFPA survey, only one-third of Americans have both developed and practiced a home fire escape plan.
  • Almost three-quarters of Americans do have an escape plan; however, less than half ever practiced it.
  • One-third of survey respondents who made an estimate thought they would have at least 6 minutes before a fire in their home would become life threatening. The time available is often less. Only 8% said their first thought on hearing a smoke alarm would be to get out!

And finally, remember to keep all lamps and lanterns away from any cows you may have, just in case.

Take Care,
Dan Berg, M.S.
Senior Safety Consultant

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People Companies

Arvig Named One of Prairie Business Magazine’s 50 Best Places to Work

Arvig is excited to announce it has been named one of Prairie Business magazine’s 50 Best Places to Work in the northern Plains. Arvig was featured in the September issue of the magazine.

Earlier this year, employees nominated their companies by submitting an anonymous employee-satisfaction survey, and Prairie Business used the survey results in selecting the 50 Best.

“This recognition is an honor because it comes directly from our employees, who took the time and effort to nominate our company for this award,” said David Arvig, Chief Operating Officer/Vice President at Arvig. “Our employees—in my opinion—are the best around, and this recognition is a reflection of their hard work and commitment to our company and our customers. Thanks to all who made it happen.”

The survey sought input on each employer’s benefits, workplace culture and employee morale, among other factors. And employees responded. Prairie Business received more than 1,000 nominations from employees from around the region, said Tom Dennis, Prairie Business editor.

“The 50 Best companies clearly recognize employee satisfaction as one of the keys to productivity and profitability,” Dennis said. “That comes through in the surveys over and over again. We all know how hard we’ll work to satisfy a good manager. Turns out people feel the same way about the companies they work for — and when an employer goes the extra mile for its workforce, the workers go all out to return the favor.”

Prairie Business is proud to present the results of the contest, which now is in its fourth year. “We congratulate all of the winning companies, and we thank the employees who responded so enthusiastically to our survey,” Dennis said.

The 50 Best winners were honored in the magazine, which is available on the web at

CTC Honored with Business Excellence Award through Brainerd Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce

Brainerd, MN – October 5, 2017 – Consolidated Telecommunications Company (CTC) will be awarded the 2017 Business Excellence Award through the Brainerd Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce at the annual dinner on November 16. Each year, the Chamber recognizes one local business for its entrepreneurial spirit and accomplishments throughout the Lakes Area with this award. The Brainerd Lakes Chamber of Commerce represents over 900 local businesses. 

The Business Excellence Award shines the spotlight on one Brainerd Lakes Chamber member who has displayed chamber values of Leadership, Workforce Development, Innovation and Community Support.

A nomination/application process was announced by the Brainerd Lakes Chamber in June 2017. After the deadline passed in mid-July, a ten-member volunteer selection committee independently scored and discussed each applicant before choosing the recipient.

CTC was honored with the award by staying true to its Cooperative Mission of delivering state-of-the-art services to the rural areas around the Brainerd Lakes Area. With offices in Brainerd, Baxter and Crosby, CTC currently provides high-speed fiber Internet, phone and TV services to more than 11,864 homes and businesses around the area.

To date, the company has obtained more than $3 million in Rural Economic Development Loans to assist in the expansion of six local businesses. CTC also supported and designed the first gigabyte connected training facility in the area, the CTC Room, at the Brainerd offices of the Brainerd Lakes Chamber of Commerce and the Brainerd Lakes Area Economic Development Corporation, which provides area businesses with a high tech meeting and training facility.

CTC employees are very active within Brainerd Lakes Area organizations including Operation Sandwich, United Way, Rotary, Bridges Career Academy and many others. Over the past seven years, CTC employees have donated more than $93,500 annually.

CTC also gained national attention when it received the Innovation Award for its network and support services at Arrowhead Electric Cooperative in Lutsen, MN, which has helped deliver much-needed broadband services to the Arrowhead. CTC has been recognized as a Smart Rural Community and received the SRC Collaboration Challenge Award in addition to becoming a Certified Gig-Capable Provider through the NTCA – The Rural Broadband Association.

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