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Calls Satellite Technology “Crucial” To People Living in Remote Areas

ALEXANDRIA, VA, February 27, 2003 – Praising satellite technology as a crucial means of two-way communications that enables American citizens living in remote areas to connect to medical, educational, and entertainment services, Senator Conrad Burns (R-Montana) spoke to leaders of the satellite industry at its annual dinner on Tuesday, February 25 at the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, DC.

Co-sponsored by the Satellite Broadcasting and Communications Association (SBCA) and the Satellite Industry Association (SIA), the dinner brought together the CEOs and other senior executives of the major satellite manufacturers, direct broadcast satellite (DBS) providers, programmers and retailers, as well as Members of Congress, high-level congressional staff, and staff members from the Federal Communications Commission. Included in the program were remarks by Eddy Hartenstein, chairman of SBCA and chairman and CEO of DirecTV, and Jeff Trauberman, chairman of SIA and director of information and communications systems for The Boeing Company.

Senator Burns, chairman of the Communications Subcommittee of the Senate Commerce Committee, commended the industry for its continued advancement of technologies that can provide information to anyone, anywhere. He referred to counties in his own state that have few schools or medical facilities, yet whose citizens have benefited from the many resources satellites offer.

"In states like Montana, with so many rural areas, satellite technology is crucial to allowing people to communicate,” said Senator Burns. “These people would otherwise be shut out from everyday life if it weren’t for the services provided by the satellite industry.”

The evening also included welcoming remarks by SBCA President Andy Wright and an introduction of the Senator by SIA President Richard DalBello.

The Satellite Industry Association is the trade organization representing U.S. space and communications companies in the commercial satellite arena. SIA’s executive member companies are the leading satellite service providers, satellite manufacturers, launch services companies and ground equipment suppliers in America. SIA is the unified voice of the U.S. commercial satellite industry on policy, regulatory, and legislative matters of common concern. The association is dedicated to promoting the use of satellite technology in global communications. Further information can be found at

The Satellite Broadcasting and Communications Association ( is the national trade organization representing all segments of the satellite industry.  It is committed to expanding the utilization of satellite technology for the broadcast delivery of video, audio, data, music, voice, interactive and broadband services.  The SBCA is composed of DBS, C-band, broadband, satellite radio, and other satellite service providers, content providers, equipment manufacturers, distributors, retailers, encryption vendors, and national and regional distribution companies that make up the satellite services industry.