Verizon VP: NJ is Most Wired State in the Country

Verizon has been expanding its fiber optic service throughout New Jersey but plans to substitute 4G service in a some areas has received criticism. Verizon Vice President of State Government Affairs for New Jersey, New York and Connecticut Leecia Eve, who is also a 2014 Executive Women of New Jersey honoree, told NJTV News Managing Editor Mike Schneider that the Board of Public Utilities ruled in Verizon’s favor.

“The board recognized a number of critical things,” said Eve. “One is the billions that Verizon has spent deploying broadband throughout our great state has really led New Jersey to be the most wired state in the country.”

Eve said that the Board of Public Utilities told Verizon that it had done an extraordinary job and that it had spent billions more than the board or the state of New Jersey could have anticipated on providing broadband service throughout the state. While the board sided with Verizon, Eve said that it does not mean there aren’t any opportunities to service communities throughout the state that do not have broadband service.

According to Eve, Verizon has entered into a settlement with the state to lay out a process to provide communities with broadband access.

Some communities do not have access to broadband service, which Eve explained is due to the high costs.

Currently New Jersey is the most wired state with about 99 percent of the state having coverage, according to Eve.

Recently Eve has been honored as one of the leading businesswomen throughout the state. According to Eve, the environment in the business world toward women has improved, but there is still some work left to be done.

Eve said that there has been significant advancement in how children are being prepared for technology in school, but that work still has to be done. Verizon’s philanthropic efforts have focused on STEM education (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics), which Eve says is a field that has come a long way.

“I tell many of my nieces and nephews, engineers and scientists are going to rule the world so if you’re thinking about a profession, think about the STEM area — science, technology and mathematics and engineering,” Eve said. “We’ve come a long way. There’s a way to go. Proud for a company that’s leading that effort.”