Governor Appoints Vice President of the Michigan Broadband Development Authority

Contact: Elizabeth Boyd 517-335-6397

February 12, 2003


Governor Appoints Vice President of the Michigan Broadband Development Authority

Governor Jennifer M. Granholm announced today the appointment of James W. Butler, III as Vice President of the Michigan Broadband Development Authority.


Butler, of East Lansing, has 30 years of experience with IBM.  As Business Unit Executive for Global Government Systems, he recently oversaw a $200 million operation for the company in Michigan, Ohio, Kentucky and West Virginia.  He was also the Senior Location Executive for Lansing, Flint, and Toledo IBM branch offices.  Butler has degrees in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from Howard University and the University of the District of Columbia.


"I'm excited to have someone of James' caliber join our team to further develop Michigan's infrastructure and demand for broadband services," said Governor Granholm.  "With James' help, I am committed to closing the digital divide in Michigan."


Butler is a decorated Vietnam War veteran.  He served as a Platoon Sergeant in the U.S. Army and earned many honors during his tour of duty, including the Combat Infantry Badge, Army Commendation Medal, Purple Heart (2) and the Bronze Star (4) with Oak Leaf Clusters for heroism in ground combat.


He has received numerous community and business awards, including the Lansing Regional Chamber of Commerce Minority Business Advocate of the Year, two awards for Junior Achievement Achiever of the Year, the Mayor's World Class Corporate Award, the Rev. Joseph E. Graves NAACP President's Award and the Alma G. Stallworth Award from the Black Caucus Foundation of Michigan.


The authority, created by PA 49 of 2002, offers low-cost loans to telecommunications companies willing to make investments in high-speed Internet, and to organizations to acquire hardware/software applications that improve or increase broadband service.  For more information about the Michigan Broadband Development Authority, visit: