A Message from the Fellows

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| Peter Radizeski of RAD-INFO, Inc. talking telecom, Cloud, VoIP, CLEC, and The Channel.

A Message from the Fellows

I attended the University of Tampa Fellows Forum this morning. Verizon was the presenting sponsor so I got to listen to Michelle Robinson, President, Southeast Region, Verizon, gush about how wonderful VZ is. Point of order, Michhelle. You said that VZ gave a whopping $2M to charity in Florida in 2009. "$31.6 billion in cash flow from operations in 2009." For the math challenged, they gave 2 out of 31,600 to charity. That's like Florida was a bum on the street and you gave them a couple of bucks. Thanks!

First up was Dr. Cecil Wilson, MD, president-elect of the AMA, who spoke of health reform. There are over 46 million Americans without health insurance. The emergency room is not the place for standard healthcare to be handled. It's getting more expensive every year. It's broken. My thought: If Congress was on the same health plan as the rest of America and not their own special health plan, this would be fixed faster than you can spell Medicaid. BTW, how much does it cost us for the pension, retirement benefits and healthcare for the Congress Critters. Anyone know?

Dr. Wilson said, "A lie can travel halfway around the world before the truth gets its boots on. And this was before the internet."

Next speaker was Elizabeth Smith, CEO of OSI (Outback Steakhouse). She talked about how in this economy it is all about the Totality of the Customer Experience. Companies can only deliver value if they deliver an experience. As many of you know, customer service in this country is at an all time low. It should be easy for a company to stand out with a Total Customer Experience.

The last speaker was certainly the best. Jonathan Baum is CEO of the Dreyfuss Corporation and member of the Operating Committee of the Bank of New York Mellon Asset Management. BNY Mellon is the oldest bank in the US with $23 trillion in assets in service around the world. He gave some sound, cautious figures about the economy and investing. "Think realistically." "Stick to your plan." If you have 20 years, stick to the long term plan at 5-10% of interest. He also cautioned to turn off the TV. No good advice comes from it. Finally, he reminded us that Americans need to start saving again.

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