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ASTAC Director of Operations Takes CEO Job

Brings two decades of Alaska telecommunications experience


Jens Laipenieks

Photo courtesy of Arctic Slope Telephone Association

Anchorage, AK – There’s a new leader at Arctic Slope Telephone Association Cooperative (ASTAC). Jens Laipenieks, who joined ASTAC in 2010 as the Manager of Sales and Business Development and was subsequently promoted to Director of Operations, has taken on the role of Chief Executive Officer. He replaces Steve Merriam who is retiring after seven years in the position, but will continue to work for ASTAC with a focus on federal issues. Laipenieks, 50, has more than 22 years of Alaskan telecommunications industry experience spanning from finance to product management and most recently has focused on streamlining ASTAC’s operations as well as expanding its business.

“This is an exciting time to take this position,” said Laipenieks. “Witnessing the impacts of the Quintillion fiber optic cable landings on ASTAC’s customers next year is something I’m really looking forward to. ASTAC continues to transform into a broadband-centric company and I’m proud to be part of that.”

ASTAC, headquartered in Anchorage, is a member-owned telephone utility cooperative that has provided telecommunications services to North Slope Borough residents since 1981. Services include local, long distance, Internet, wireless and LAN/WAN. For more information, visit www.astac.net.


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