Craig Gunderson is former Chief Executive of Oxford Networks
Charlotte, North Carolina—May 31, 2017: Conterra Ultra Broadband Holdings has announced the hiring of Craig S. Gunderson as its President & Chief Operating Officer. In his new role, Mr. Gunderson will be responsible for the day-to-day operations and consolidated financial results of the Company. He will report to the Company’s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Stephen Leeolou. After an appropriate transition period, Conterra’s Executive Vice President of Operations and Technology, Dennis Francis, will be retiring from day-to-day responsibilities but will remain an active advisor to the Company.
Mr. Gunderson’s career spans nearly 25 years of Telecom sales, operations and executive leadership experience at both the corporate and field levels. For the past 14 years, he served as Chief Operating Officer, President and (for the last 10 years) President & CEO of Oxford Networks until its sale to FirstLight Fiber this past December. Oxford was a private equity backed, fiber optics based company with 200 employees that offered a diverse suite of transport, data and voice services to customers in the New England region. Under Mr. Gunderson’s leadership, Oxford transformed from a traditional Local Exchange Carrier to a highly successful, fiber-based telecom services carrier that achieved solid double-digit average annual growth rates.
Prior to his executive roles at Oxford Networks, Mr. Gunderson spent eight years at Frontier Communications/Global Crossing, headquartered in Rochester, NY, where he served in various field and corporate management roles which included the integration of several large acquisitions in multiple states. Before starting his business career, Mr. Gunderson served for five years in the United States Army as an aviation and operations officer, achieving the rank of Captain in the Medical Service Corps.
“We have found an exceptionally well-seasoned and highly successful senior Telecom executive in Craig Gunderson,” commented Conterra’s CEO, Steve Leeolou. “Craig has demonstrated over the past two decades the ability to recognize and capitalize on the constantly changing tides in the Telecom industry and utilize his highly regarded leadership skills and management disciplines to drive attractive, sustained performance results. At Conterra, he steps into a familiar industry environment with an energized team of professionals, many of whom have been developed under the outstanding leadership of my long-time business partner, Dennis Francis. Conterra would not be as well positioned as it is today were it not for Dennis’ tireless executive leadership. We are extremely fortunate he will continue to support the Company as a significant owner and trusted advisor,” added Mr. Leeolou.
Conterra has provided asset-based telecommunication services since 2005 and is one of the largest remaining independent broadband infrastructure companies in the United States based on its network assets and revenues. The company is majority owned by Court Square Capital, a private investment firm with approximately $6-billion under management, and the remaining ownership largely held by Conterra’s management team. The company’s other institutional financial partners include Toronto Dominion Bank, Bank of America, CoBank, ING Capital and Antares.