Feb 022011

(Photo by Tammy Gray-Searles) -- Frontier Communications CEO Maggie Wilderotter (second from left) recently traveled to Show Low to meet with local employees and customers. Wilderotter was named one of the 50 most powerful women in business by Fortune magazine and also serves as vice chair of the President’s National Security Telecommunications Advisory Committee. She explained that she is visiting communities across Frontier’s service area to hear first-hand from employees and customers. She was joined in Show Low by (left to right) Western Region President Denise Baumbach, General Manager Mark Jeffries and Western Region Vice President Becky Potts.

By Tammy Gray-Searles —

A U.S.-based workforce, improving broadband services and becoming more involved in local communities as a company are among Frontier Communications CEO Maggie Wilderotter’s priorities.

Wilderotter recently made a trip to Show Low to visit with local employees and customers.

“I’ve been spending time, for about the last six and a half months, meeting employees and customers,” she explained. “I want to hear from them how things are going and find out what’s important for customers.”

Local employees total about 60, including contracted service providers, in the Show Low, Snow-flake/Taylor and Holbrook areas. Show Low General Manager Mark Jeffries noted that the company recently placed a full-time technician in Holbrook and four new employees in the Snowflake-Taylor area.

According to Jeffries, Frontier plans to become more involved in Holbrook and Snowflake-Taylor.

“In Holbrook we need to be seen and better known. There’s a lot of great things happening there and op-portunity for growth,” he said.

Jeffries pointed out that in Snowflake and Taylor, new employees have become involved in community groups such as the chamber of commerce, and are providing an important link between Frontier and its cus-tomers.

Wilderotter noted that Frontier also supports communities by making local purchases. She explained that the company tries to purchase supplies in communities where it does business rather than from a central sup-plier.

“We buy local,” she said. “We care about the communities.”

Frontier has recently extended its local reach, as well as that across portions of the United States, through an acquisition of some of Verizon’s assets. Wilderotter explained that her company purchased land-line opera-tions, broadband and satellite television services in 14 states. The move brought in about 6,000 additional cus-tomers in Arizona and shifted Frontier from a Fortune 1000 to a Fortune 500 company with more than $6 bil-lion in annual revenue.

The acquisition included a portion of Verizon’s workforce, 500 of whom were based in India. Those jobs were returned to the United States.

“We are 100-percent U.S. based,” Wilderotter said.

As the company moves forward, Wilderotter noted that Frontier plans to upgrade broadband and expand Wi-Fi (wireless) services, as well as offer cloud (off-site) computing, television options and computing protection services, such as data backup and identity protection. For example, Frontier recently launched myfitv.com, a site featuring popular television shows and movies available for viewing online. Wilderotter noted that the site is “like Hulu on steroids.”

“It’s exciting, the products and services we’re offering,” Wilderotter said.