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Service Impact - Western Idaho

RESOLVED 1:22 PM: We are pleased to inform you that the residual issues have been resolved, and voice and internet services should now be fully restored for all customers. If you are still experiencing any issues, please contact our tech support team for assistance. Thank you for your patience and understanding during this time.

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Board of Directors

Allen Hoopes, Chairman & CEO

Allen Hoopes, Chairman & CEO Since 1997, Allen R. Hoopes has served as the Board Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Silver Star Communications. Upon earning his Bachelor of Science in Finance, Marketing, and Operations from Brigham Young University in 1986, Allen held the position of Assistant Manager of Silver Star from 1986 to 1992. In 1992, he was promoted to Vice President of Operations and General Manager of Silver Star Telephone Company, Inc. and Columbine Telephone Company; a position that he held until 1997. In 1997 Allen assumed the role of President and CEO as well Board Chairman. To allow more focus on strategic initiatives for the company, Allen turned over the role of President to Ron McCue in 2012.

With more than 30 years of experience in the telephone, mobile wireless and broadband industries, Allen is extremely passionate about technology. He has held key positions in several industry associations and organizations including Director and past Chairman of the Board for the Rural Telephone Finance Cooperative, Board member of the Organization for the Promotion and Advancement of Small Telecommunications Companies, past President of the Idaho Telephone Association and Board of Director of the National Telecommunications Cooperative Association (NTCA)/Rural Broadband Association. Allen is currently a Board member representing the NTCA’s Northwest Region – Commercial companies.

Allen is a lifelong resident of scenic Star Valley, Wyoming. He is married to Jamielyn and they are the proud parents of five children. Away from the office, Allen enjoys running, hunting, snowmobiling, camping, fishing, hiking, and water sports.

Ron McCue, Board Member

Ron McCue served as a Silver Star Communications Senior Executive for 32 years before his retirement as President in 2021. Having earned his Bachelor Degree in Business Administration, with honors, and graduating with an M.B.A., magna cum laude, Ron worked in the telecommunications industry for 44 years.
Ron served as a registered lobbyist in five states and has provided testimony in front of nine different state utilities commissions, the F.C.C. and both the U.S. House of Congress and the U.S. Senate. He also previously served as an advisor to the Pentagon Defense Communications Council.
Ron served on the USTelecom Association’s Board of Directors and Leadership and Government Affairs Committees. He also served on the Boards of Directors for Syringa Networks, the Idaho Telecom Alliance (ITA), the Wyoming Business Alliance and the Wyoming Heritage Foundation.
Ron recently served as the vice chairman for UW College of Business Advisory Board. Additionally, he also served a six-year term on the Board of Trustees for the University of Wyoming, two as an officer and one and one half as the President.
Originally from Riverton, Wyoming, Ron is a fourth generation Wyoming native and currently lives in beautiful Star Valley, Wyoming with his wife Gail. They have two daughters, Kelsie and Shalee who have brought Ron and Gail seven beautiful grandchildren.
In his free time, Ron is passionate about fine woodworking and enjoys many outdoor sports including snowmobiling, hunting, fishing and skiing.

Rod R. Jensen, Board Member

Rod Jensen has been a member of the Silver Star Communications Board of Directors since April 1997. Rod is a founder and President/CEO of the Bank of Star Valley (a position he has held since 1996). His financial expertise and background complements the make-up of the Silver Star Board.

Rod also serves Chairman of Swift Creek Power, and the Afton Utility Board, and Afton Lincoln County Airport Board, and is President elect of the Wyoming Bankers Association.  Rod’s past activities include serving as Chairman of the Lower Valley Energy Board of Directors and on the Star Valley Medical Center Board of Trustees, as well as an Afton Town Councilman.

Rod is a life-time resident of Star Valley, Wyoming but spent some time away to earn a Bachelor of Science in Economics and a Master of Business Administration at the University of Wyoming.

Rod is married to Ileene Jensen and they are the parents of two children. In his free time, Rod enjoys photography, hiking and fly-fishing.

Bob Foster, Board Member

Bob Foster has been a member of the Silver Star Board of Directors since January 2007. He is a resident of Teton Valley, Idaho. Bob, an Advanced EMT, is the Director of Emergency Medical Services for Fremont County, Idaho and, after serving on the Himalayan Rescue Association Mt. Everest Base Camp Medical Team, founded a training company that specializes in wilderness and rescue medicine. He can be found working as a clinical assistant at 4 Peaks Urgent Care in Driggs in his spare time!

Bob holds Masters Degrees in Business and Industrial Management and in Organizational Behavior. After “retiring” from a 34-year career as an operations supervisor and franchisee for McDonald’s Restaurant Corporation, Bob served with many community organizations and founded the Teton Valley Business Development Center.

Bob and his wife Lisa are the parents of six children and have six granddaughters. They are dedicated outdoors-people and enjoy all of the incredible activities and adventures so readily available throughout the Rocky Mountain region.

Hyrum Johnson, Board Member

Hyrum F. Johnson joined the Silver Star Board in 2022.  As a serial entrepreneur, he brings experience in strategic positioning, small business management, and finance.  Having invested, consulted, or owned businesses across a variety of industries, Hyrum’s skill is in big-picture strategy and opportunity analysis, helping organizations identify and realize their greatest potential.   

Most recently, Hyrum served eight years as the Mayor of the City of Driggs, Idaho, a post he found extraordinarily challenging and fulfilling as he fiercely advocated on behalf of his constituents at State, National and local levels.  Prior to this, Hyrum served on the Teton County Economic Development Steering Committee and Driggs Urban Renewal Agency.  

During his diverse career, Hyrum also served on a variety of boards, including the Association of Idaho Cities, Better Business Bureau, and various industry groups.  With an education spanning several institutions across four continents, Hyrum is a graduate of Brigham Young University, with a bachelor’s degree in German Language Studies, and is a strong advocate of life-long learning.  

Hyrum and his wife, Sarah, relocated with their three children to Driggs, Idaho, in 2008 to be closer to the outdoor recreation they love.

Executive Staff

Barbara Sessions, President

Barbara Sessions has served as Silver Star’s President since September 2021. She has worked in the telecommunications industry since 2002, in roles as diverse as Human Resources, Sales, and Operations and Engineering. Most recently she was Silver Star’s Vice President and COO. Barbara earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration, as well as a Master of Business Administration from the University of Wyoming.

Barbara currently sits on the board of Syringa Networks and the Wyoming Broadband Advisory Council. She is also a member of the NTCA Regulatory Council, the Wyoming Legislative Task Force, and the WYDOT Broadband Planning Commission.

In 2021 Barbara was honored as the 18th Annual FTTXcellence Award winner. This broadband leadership award, sponsored by Corning and Lightwave Magazine, was designed to recognize an individual who advanced the use of optical access technology in the Americas. Sessions was selected from a very competitive slate of nominees for her inspiring commitment and innovative leadership in bringing broadband services to rural communities.

Other notable achievements include sitting on the USTelecom Engineering & Technology Policy Committee and the USTelecom Traceback Committee. Barbara also acted as a telecommunications consultant on the FirstNet Committee and is a Competitive Carriers Association’s Wireless Regulatory committee member.

Barbara is very active in the community, having served on the Afton Town Council, the Afton Planning and Zoning Committee and the Star Valley Economic Development Board.

Barbara and her husband Rick have three amazing children. In their free time, Barbara and her family enjoy camping, 4-wheeling and traveling to new places.

Jefferson H. England, Vice President and CFO

Jefferson H. England arrived in Star Valley in 2013 to accept the role of Chief Financial Officer of Silver Star Communications. Jeff is an “entrepreneurial CFO” with a business sense for taking calculated risk leading to investment and growth.

Jeff has a Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting and a Masters of Business Administration from Idaho State University in Pocatello, ID. Following graduation, he worked in public accounting as an auditor for Arthur Andersen and KPMG in Boise, ID. His background includes a wide variety of industries including grocery retail, forest products, information technology, and financial services.

Jeff continued his educational pursuits by earning a Master’s Degree in Finance from Texas A&M University in College Station, TX and then spent ten years as the Chief Financial Officer at K2Share, LLC, headquartered in College Station, TX. While at K2Share, Jeff helped set strategic direction and provided executive leadership for the company in the performance of professional services in the cyber security, web site hosting, and application management industries.

In addition to his professional endeavors, Jeff serves as President of the Wyoming Telecommunications Association. Jeff also serves on USTelecom Association’s Committees for Tax Policy and National Security and Public Safety. Previously, Jeff served in a variety of volunteer positions at local charities and is a life-long volunteer leader and supporter of the Boy Scouts of America.

Jeff is married to Cindy, his wife of 23 years. They have five wonderful children and together, they enjoy all the outdoor adventures found in the mountains near their home in Wyoming. In his time away from work, Jeff is passionate about soccer and is a dedicated fan of Manchester United. He also enjoys hunting, snowmobiling and riding dirt bikes with his family.

Megan Habben, Area Vice President Idaho West

Before being named AVP in June 2023, Megan managed CTC Telecom Customer Service, Business, and Tech Support. She was responsible for all of the company’s customer relations dealing with residential and business operations, end-to-end management of service, and supporting all markets. She also played a key role in developing and implementing new methods of training, quality assurance, and strategic performance.

Prior to joining CTC, Megan grew within the CenturyLink ranks during her 13 years of employment. She held diverse roles in Customer Service, Financial Services, Online Chat Sales, Offline Order Support, and Management.

Being a native of the treasure valley, she enjoys spending time with her husband Chris and four children. She enjoys camping, being on the lake, floating down all the rivers in Idaho, and being grateful for everything Idaho has to offer. She also loves attending and rooting on our very own Boise State Broncos.

Jason Nelson, Area Vice President Idaho East

Jason joined the Silver Star Communications team in 2012 and has since become an integral part of the company’s growth and success. With a career marked by dedication and achievement, Jason was appointed Area Vice President for East Idaho in July of 2023, tasked with overseeing the operational needs and driving the successful completion of corporate goals and priorities. He plays a key role in facilitating operational efficiency and delivering superior service to Silver Star customers.

Jason holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business with a Minor in Construction Management from Brigham Young University – Idaho. With over 20 years of construction experience, Jason brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to Silver Star.

Throughout his career, Jason has overseen municipal, middle-mile, and long-haul projects, building successful relationships with federal, state, and local regulatory agencies. His ability to navigate regulatory environments has been instrumental in the successful execution of projects under his leadership.

Jason has been happily married to Jodee for 20 years, and together they have four children. In his leisure time, Jason enjoys outdoor activities such as hunting and camping.

Brock Walters, Area Vice President Open Access

Brock Walters started at Silver Star as a business analyst. He came from a background in technology and business. Brock has previously worked professionally in cyber security consulting and later as a software developer. He brings technical expertise to the team at a time when the industry is becoming increasingly complex.

Currently, Brock serves on the Star Valley Health Foundation Board and the NTCA Technical Committee. His goal in serving in these areas is to help the healthcare in Star Valley to become more readily available to everyone and to keep Silver Star at the forefront of innovative internet connectivity.

Brock enjoys spending time with his young family, helping others at his local church, and hiking. He is excited to be a part of Silver Star’s great history and grow it to become the dominant regional service provider in both Idaho and Wyoming.

Eric Heap, Area Vice President Wyoming West

Eric Heap is a seasoned professional who joined the Silver Star team in December 2022, bringing with him a wealth of experience and expertise in the construction, engineering, and electrical fields. His return to Afton, Wyoming, marked an exciting new chapter in his career, driven by the immense potential and challenges that Silver Star presented.

 

Eric’s educational journey took him through Casper College and the University of Wyoming, where he obtained a degree in Automation Technology and Industrial Controls. With his strong foundation, he embarked on a remarkable career spanning over three decades. His professional journey includes pivotal roles at Plains North America, where he demonstrated exceptional leadership and acumen. Eric’s roles ranged from Manager of Pipeline Systems to Technical Manager, and Director of Technical Services and Energy Management. In these roles, he oversaw and directed multiple departments, including Electrical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, and Automation, both in the United States and Canada. 

 

Eric’s impact in the Oil and Gas industry extended to managing large teams of over 100 professionals and overseeing projects of up to $125 million in scale. He was instrumental in developing and implementing a comprehensive electrical safety program, streamlining project execution, and coordinating project startups. Furthermore, Eric played a crucial role in instituting a vibration testing program, highlighting his dedication to innovation and efficiency. 

 

One of Eric’s greatest strengths is his commitment to seeing projects through their entire life cycle, from inception to completion. He understands the value of building strong relationships along the way, and this has been a hallmark of his successful career. Born and raised in Afton, Wyoming, Eric’s connection to the area is deep-rooted. He is the proud parent of two children, Kyle and Shelley, both of whom also call Wyoming their home.  In his spare time, Eric is an avid outdoor enthusiast, enjoying activities such as fishing, camping, and hunting. He cherishes time spent with his six grandchildren and looks forward to watching them grow.