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Merit’s Don Welch Named to Internet2 Advisory Council

ANN ARBOR, MI – Merit Network President/CEO Don Welch has been named to Internet2’s External Relations Advisory Council (ERAC), which is responsible for advising Internet2’s Board and management on matters of policy, standards, and strategies in the context of industry, government, and international relations.
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“It is an honor to be elected by my peers,” Welch said, “but it is really an acknowledgment of Merit’s esteem and leadership more than a reflection of my qualities.”

Welch was elected to a three-year term on the ERAC on March 13 and will serve as Regional Network Representative for the Council.

“In this role I’ll be helping to shape Internet2’s role in many areas, but most importantly for Michigan, Internet2’s economic development and technology transfer policies,” according to Welch. “I’ll be working to increase the value of Internet2 participation for our individual members as well the State as a whole.”

Others newly elected to the External Relations Advisory Council include: James Williams (Indiana University Global Network Operations Center), George Thoma (NIH), John Evans (Evans Telecommunications), and Mark Luker (EDUCAUSE).

The 15-member ERAC meets periodically to discuss issues related to: technology transfer and engagement strategies between Internet2 and industry; the role of national-scale networks as a vital resource for the nation’s economic, scientific, and cultural development; and maintenance of strong bilateral partnerships with international networking organizations and Internet2’s leadership role in international collaborations.

Merit Network is the Internet2 connector for Michigan, connecting over 60 organizations to the nation’s research and education network. Merit has been an Internet2 member since 1999, providing Internet2 access to education, government, and nonprofits through the Sponsored Educational Group Participation (SEGP) program.

About Internet2

Internet2 is the foremost U.S. advanced networking consortium. Led by the research and education community since 1996, Internet2 promotes the missions of its members by providing both leading-edge network capabilities and unique partnership opportunities that together facilitate the development, deployment and use of revolutionary Internet technologies. Internet2 brings the U.S. research and academic community together with technology leaders from industry, government and the international community to undertake collaborative efforts that have a fundamental impact on tomorrow’s Internet. For more information:

About Merit Network

Merit Network Inc., is a nonprofit corporation owned and governed by Michigan’s public universities. Merit owns and operates America’s longest-running regional research and education network. In 1966, Michigan’s public universities created Merit as a shared resource to help meet their common need for networking assistance. Since its formation, Merit Network has remained at the forefront of research and education networking expertise and services. Merit provides high-performance networking and IT solutions to Michigan’s public universities, colleges, K-12 organizations, libraries, state government, healthcare, and other non-profit organizations. For more information: