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March 05, 2024 | Tom Ballard

Deb Socia announces pending retirement from The Enterprise Center

The national leader in digital equity and broadband adoption came to Chattanooga to lead the nonprofit in 2019.

Deb Socia, President and Chief Executive Officer of The Enterprise Center (TEC) in Chattanooga, has announced that she plans to retire later this year. As a result, the nonprofit’s board of directors has begun the search process for its next leader.

A national leader in digital equity and broadband adoption, Socia brought her expertise to Chattanooga in 2019. Throughout the past five years, the organization has forged critical partnerships and several new programs to expand access to resources for communities throughout Hamilton County and the state of Tennessee.

Deb Socia

“Deb’s passion for people and her tireless work to bring access and resources to communities has been a driving force behind The Enterprise Center’s impact, partnerships, and growth,” said TEC Board Chair Sydney Crisp. “Her leadership, especially throughout times of unexpected change in a pandemic, set the course for where we are today.”

The nonprofit works to unite people, organizations, and technology to create an advanced and inclusive future, creating new initiatives to address access for neurodiverse and justice-involved populations in addition to expanding programming to address local workforce needs and civic engagement.

Under Socia’s leadership, TEC has assisted in the implementation of HCS EdConnect, created by Hamilton County Schools and EPB to bring internet access to more than 17,000 Hamilton County Schools students and their families. She has also led the development of new programming like EMPACT, a Google information technology certification program in partnership with Chattanooga State that assists those seeking the opportunity to improve their careers. Another initiative Center’s – Tech Goes Home Tennessee – has celebrated more than 11,000 graduates, supporting teachers, parents, older adults, city workforce development initiatives, and others.

“As I step back, I’ve never been more certain that the infrastructure is in place to continue this work and help residents across all our communities experience more equitable access to resources,” Socia said. “We have come so far,  and yet have so far yet to go. I have full confidence that our incredible team will move forward successfully.”

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