db-WEB- Windstream ribbon cutting.jpg

CONTRIBUTED PHOTO/Adam Lampe

Celebrating the expansion of Windstream to the area are City of Harrison Mayor Jerry Jackson, (from left); local operations manager Tom Harris (behind Jackson), vice president Kinetic operations Gary Cooke, business sales consultant Dottie Hoppis, consultant operations support Jeannie Lewis, president-state operations Brad Hedrick and president/CEO Harrison Chamber of Commerce Bob Largent during a Business After Hours on Tuesday, Aug. 6 at the 202 Graham Street location.

“Baby, we are back,” Windstream local operations manager Tom Harris said Tuesday night, Aug. 6, at the Business After Hours and open house sponsored by Windstream and the Harrison Regional Chamber of Commerce.

Gary Cooke said, “Harrison has a team of good people with skill sets, values and tenure. It was clear to me we needed to invest more into this community.”

Windstream currently employs 163 people in Harrison. Jeannie Lewis, Windstream consultant Kinetic operations said, “This includes our offices located on Graham Street and Pine Street as well as our technicians in the field. With the expansion of our new internet support team scheduled to complete in the next 60 to 90 days,  we will add an additional 10 to 15 which could give us a total of 178 employees.”

Staff manager, Joshua Harrison said, “Harrison will be the hub for operational support for the whole company. ‘Kinetic’ is our brand name for the premium products we offer for customers — both residential and business. This is a major investment in fiber optics, speed and reliability.”

Kinetic includes the service of “fixed wireless” which works even in inclimate weather and in remote, rural areas.

Cooke said they had just installed the fixed wireless system for a customer who operated a turkey farm outside of town in a rural, remote area.

“When we were finished, he was receiving more than 100 mg of internet speed from a tower two miles away,” Cooke said. “We can now provide super high speed for rural customers. His wife works from home, so she was thrilled.”

“Welcome to Harrison for a reinvested and restructured Windstream,” Chamber president Bob Largent said. “We are happy to have you here, especially with Kinetic. We value what you do in the city of Harrison and Boone County. Thanks for all you guys do for our community.”

City of Harrison Mayor Jerry Jackson said, “I echo what Bob says. This has been great. I’ve been to a lot of ribbon cuttings in the last six months. But nothing like this. You guys are such a professional part of Harrison and we really value you.”

Brad Hedrick, Windstream regional president of operations said, “Windstream has invested more than a million dollars in our fiber optic backbone in Harrison and we are really excited about that. We are also investing in fixed wireless across Boone County — bringing faster internet speeds to the residents of Harrison and Boone County. It’s what we do and the business we are in. We are proud to do it.”

“We are also investing in the community as well and the employee base,” Cooke said. “We’ve hired more than 50 employees over the last 12 months. We determined today we are going to add another tier one class which is approximately 15-18 people that will be in place in the next 60 days.”

They are hiring for the national call center and high level technical positions, too.

Windstream recently received a prestigious award. Windstream Enterprise, a managed communication services provider, announced that Gartner has included Windstream in the Magic Quadrant for Unified Communications as a Service, Worldwide report. Windstream was positioned as one of 12 providers in the Magic Quadrant report, published on July 30.

“We’re honored to be included in this 2019 Gartner Magic Quadrant,” said Layne Levine, president at Windstream Enterprise & Wholesale. “Windstream Enterprise’s focus on innovation with our proprietary technology combined with a full range of network and voice solutions will continue to distinguish us in the market.”

Windstream has plans to re-open the downtown location in the next few months for the convenience of customers.

For more information about the products and services Windstream offers call (800) 347-1991.

 

 

 

Donna has written for the HDT for more than 19 years. When off the clock, she enjoys writing for children, teaching piano lessons and being a pastor's wife. The Braymers have three married sons and daughter-in-laws and 9 grandchildren.

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