ConnectedNation announced last week that Charlevoix County, Michigan was recognized as the first county nationally to be certified as a “Connected” community under Connected Nation’s Connected community engagement program.
The Connected program facilitated by the non-profit’s state affiliates supports the building of a comprehensive action plan for a connected community by reviewing the technology landscape, developing regional partnerships, establishing local teams, and conducting a thorough community assessment of broadband access, adoption, and use. Northern Lower Michigan has historically had limited options for broadband services due to natural topographical barriers and a highly dispersed population base.
The Connected methodology has a 4-step process that consists of:
1. Identification and empowerment of a community team leader (local champion) and creation of a community team composed of a diverse group of local residents from various sectors of the economy including education, government, healthcare, private sector, and libraries.
2. Assessment of community technology resources guided by Connected Nation’s Connected portal and based on adoption, access, and use of broadband.
3. Development of a community technology plan and implementation of recommended actions that will lead to community certification as a Connected community.
4. Once a community is certified, it has an avenue to discuss its success and pursue opportunities as a recognized, technologically advanced community.
“We congratulate Charlevoix County on this milestone achievement,” said Connected Nation President and COO Tom Ferree. “The hard work of local leaders in this effort will pay off for all area residents for many years to come.”