Having launched several startups, including her own successful boutique communications and technology law firm prior to joining Womble Bond Dickinson, Carri Bennet uses her entrepreneurial spirit and smarts to make the often times seemingly impossible achievable. Carri is exacting and persistent in achieving her clients’ goals.  When working with clients, Carri determines the desired outcome and then creatively develops solutions that are structured to be cost effective and result oriented.  She is known as a spunky outspoken advocate for small rural carriers, having battled with regulators and large companies for more than 30 years to ensure that small rural businesses have a seat at the table and a strong voice in Washington, DC. 

In an effort to better understand the intricate technical and business issues facing her wireless and broadband client base, Carri also served as General Counsel and the de facto chief operating officer of an international wireless carrier.  In that role, she developed a wealth of knowledge on nearly every aspect of running a small commercial wireless company that operated in the United States, the United Kingdom, Denmark, Poland, Sweden, and Germany.  She has since translated this experience into better servicing her clients.

Carri testifies before the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), Congress and the courts on rural wireless issues and speaks regularly at industry trade shows and legal seminars on cybersecurity, data privacy, spectrum policy, universal service funding reform and business development and strategy issues for communications and technology companies. She represents her clients before the FCC, state regulatory agencies, the courts and Congress.  She has advised clients and industry groups on creating strategic alliances and new business opportunities in the fast-paced world of communications technologies. In 2017, Carri was appointed by FCC Chairman Ajit Pai to serve on the FCC’s BDAC Federal Siting Work Group and tasked with making recommendations for improving the timing and processes associated with the siting and deployment of broadband infrastructure on federal lands and buildings.

    Experience

    Any result the lawyer or law firm may have achieved on behalf of clients in other matters does not necessarily indicate similar results can be obtained for other clients.

    • Serves as General Counsel to the Rural Wireless Association, formulating advocacy strategies to ensure that rural America obtains the same level of wireless service as urban America.  Members consist of rural wireless carriers serving less than 100,000 subscribers and the companies that support their efforts to serve rural America.
    • Serves on the Board of Directors and as Secretary-Treasurer of the Foundation for Rural Service (FRS), a 501(c) foundation that provides grant funding for rural economic development projects and scholarships to rural students as well as educating policy makers on rural broadband issues. Started planned giving component to raise more money for FRS’s mission.
    • Works with broadband providers to shore up cybersecurity practices and prepare them for handling cyber incidents to limit liability and damages.
    • Represents broadband and telecom service providers, content providers, mobile virtual network operators (MVNOs), equipment manufacturers and investment companies on all aspects of FCC regulation and compliance.
    • Works closely with her clients’ C-Level officers and their respective boards of directors to develop and implement strategic business plans to carry them forward into an uncertain future.  Carri consistently and proactively guides her clients through change and supports them through technology transitions in the ever-developing broadband voice and data services.

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    Contact information

    Bar admissions

    • Pennsylvania, 1987
    • District of Columbia, 1988
    • Maryland, 2008

    Admitted to practice before:

    • U.S. Supreme Court
    • U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit
    • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
    • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
    • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
    • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
    • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit

    Education

    • J.D., 1987, Catholic University, Columbus School of Law
      • Catholic University Law Review
      • Institute for Communications Law Studies, Certificate
    • B.A., 1983, North Carolina State University
      • cum laude