Floyd County High School is now streaming local high school sports online. Thanks to a partnership with The National Federation of High Schools (NFHS) Network and a Pixellot automated camera system donated and installed by Citizens, your county’s technology company. The camera system and online platform give parents, grandparents, and alumni the opportunity to keep up with the action regardless of where they live or travel.

For 10 years, Citizens has provided an avenue for FCHS sports to be seen on Citizens’ own local channel, CCTV Channel 20, for local subscribers. Citizens has secured videographers and commentators for full-productions of basketball, football, volleyball, and soccer games. This tradition continues and is now expanding to give viewers the opportunity to watch these FCHS sports live and on-demand online.

“The new camera system has helped us streamline our production workflow by deploying an automated multi-camera system in a single fixed rig. I have been impressed with its ability to cover the entire court and field while tracking the flow of play. If you’ve seen a recent game aired on CCTV, then you have seen the automated system in action.” stated Hari Berzins, Citizens Content Strategist.

“We will continue to air the games on Citizens’ CCTV Channel 20, but we’ve been looking for a way to offer people beyond our service area the ability to enjoy the games. Our new partnership with Pixellot and the NFHS provides a well established online platform for us to offer our local content on any device wherever you are; this is a great solution.”

The NFHS Network offers three subscription packages that allow subscribers access to not only Floyd County High School games but also high school sports across the country.

  • Monthly Pass only $9.99
  • Annual Pass only $80

You can subscribe to your all-access pass at
https://www.nfhsnetwork.com/schools/floyd-county-high-school-floyd-va. Pay securely online with a major credit card, and support FCHS with a portion of all sales going back to the school.

Your All-Access Pass to the NFHS Network provides:

  • The ability to watch games on the go via your phone or tablet
  • Full access to Live regular season and postseason sporting events
  • Immediate access to events when they are available On Demand

For more information, visit www.citizens.coop, call 540.745.2111 or 276.637.6485. Citizens is a member-owned Cooperative providing telephone, Internet, and TV to Floyd County, a portion of Wythe County and New Castle. Citizens also offer symmetrical business Ethernet, IT Solutions, Home Security Systems (DCJS #11-9804) as well as Citizens Medical Alert. Citizens is located at 220 Webbs Mill Road in Floyd. Lobby and drive-thru hours are 8am-6pm Monday – Friday; 9 am – 1 pm on Saturday.

Citizens Cablevision is pleased to announce the addition of InfoOne, Channel 19 to their lineup. InfoOne displays much like a bulletin board of local information important to residents, such as power outages, school closings, road information and more.

InfoOne is an automated technology service based out of Wytheville, VA that collects important information from many publicly available sources. InfoOne formats and maps that information, determines to which of our communities the information applies, and then broadcasts that information to our viewers through our custom iPhone and Android apps, Twitter, Facebook, direct text, and now Citizens’ television.

InfoOne divides all information into geographical communities, usually by county. Subscribers of Citizens Cablevision will see information based on your service area: Floyd, Wythe, and Craig counties.

Information carried by InfoOne, channel 19 comes from the following sources:

  • National Weather Service
    • All weather alerts affecting any part of the community
    • Current weather conditions.
    • 5-day weather forecast.
  • Appalachian Power
    • Broadcast power outages affecting 25 or more customers within a given community
  • Virginia Department of Transportation
    • All “major” and “high profile” traffic incidents within the community, and within 5 miles of the geographic perimeter of the community.
  • National Centers for Missing and Exploited Children
    • Runaway children within 30 miles of the community.
    • Amber Alerts occurring within 300 miles of the community.
  • School closings
    • Public and private school closings and delays.
  • United States Geological Survey
    • Earthquakes over 2.0 magnitude occurring within a radius that could potentially affect the community (the radius diameter is determined by the magnitude of the earthquake)

The video stream generated shows active alerts one at a time with the text information scrolling vertically. It cycles through active alerts, local weather conditions/forecasts, and information about the InfoOne service. Music from Wytheville radio station, WXBX, is played in the background on the channel, giving viewers a true local experience.

To become more familiar with InfoOne, download the free app from your Apple or Playstore for your phone or tablet.

For more information, visit www.citizens.coop , call 540.745.2111 or 276.637.6485. Citizens is a member-owned Cooperative providing telephone, Internet, and TV to Floyd County, portion of Wythe County and New Castle. Citizens also offers symmetrical business Ethernet, IT Solutions, Home Security Systems as well as Citizens Medical Alert. Citizens is located at 220 Webbs Mill Road in Floyd. Lobby hours are 8am-6pm Monday – Friday; 9am1pm on Saturday.

Arlington, Va., (October 12, 2019) – Citizens Telephone Cooperative (d.b.a. Citizens) was recognized on October 12, 2018, by NTCA–The Rural Broadband Association as a Certified Gig-Capable Provider for delivering gigabit broadband speeds and enabling technological innovation in community the of Floyd County, Virginia. NTCA is the premier association representing nearly 900 independent, community-based telecommunications companies that are leading innovation in rural and small-town America.

As a Certified Gig-Capable Provider, Citizens joins a national campaign to build awareness and industry recognition of community-based telecom providers that have built communications networks capable of delivering Internet speeds of up to 1 gigabit per second, which is 100 times faster than those currently available in many U.S. households. Citizens also received tools to promote itself as a Gig-Capable Provider throughout Floyd County and will be recognized in NTCA media, on the NTCA website, and during association conferences and events.

“I applaud Citizens for its commitment to delivering the Internet’s fastest speeds—an accomplishment worthy of much praise considering the unique and challenging circumstances small, community-based telecommunications providers operate under every day in serving some of our country’s most rural and remote communities,” said NTCA Chief Executive Officer Shirley Bloomfield. “By building a gigabit-capable network, Citizens has not only overcome these challenges, but also shattered conventional benchmarks for broadband speed to enable cutting-edge technologies that drive innovation and promote economic development in their community.”

To achieve certification, telecommunications companies must show that gigabit technology is currently commercially available within 95% of one or more exchanges or census blocks within its serving territory and that such service can be provided without new trenching or stringing new aerial facilities. This statement must be confirmed by a letter from an engineering firm or other independent source involved in the company’s network planning, deployment or operation.

“Citizens is proud to deploy Residential Gigabit Internet to our fiber customers.  In 2017, we began a multi-year fiber overbuild of our copper network in Floyd County, as we complete sections of this network, we will contact customers regarding the new Residential Gigabit Internet packages available to them as well as our CitiZip Business packages.  The construction of this project is scheduled through the end of 2023. By the end of the project over 80% of our customers in Floyd County will be able to switch to our fiber packages.” stated Dennis Reece, Chief Operating Officer of Citizens.

More information about the NTCA Gig-Capable Provider certification program is available at www.ntca.org/gigcertified.

To learn about Citizens’ fiber build-out plan, visit https://stage.myswva.com/fiberexpansion/.   At the bottom of this webpage, you will see several useful links like how to estimate the amount of data your home needs and determine if your home and devices are gigabit ready, learn what uses data with your home and how to manage that, and a link to Citizens’ Gigabit data packages.

Citizens is a member-owned Cooperative providing telephone, Internet, and TV to Floyd County and surrounding communities. Citizens also offers symmetrical business Ethernet, IT Solutions, Home Security Systems as well as Citizens Medical Alert. Citizens is located at 220 Webbs Mill Road in Floyd. Lobby hours are 8am-6pm Monday – Friday; 9am – 1pm on Saturday.  For more information, visitwww.citizens.coop or call 540.745.2111.

About NTCA–The Rural Broadband Association

NTCA–The Rural Broadband Association is the premier association representing nearly 900 independent, community-based telecommunications companies that are leading innovation in rural and small-town America. NTCA advocates on behalf of its members in the legislative and regulatory arenas, and it provides training and development; publications and industry events; and an array of employee benefit programs. In an era of transformative technological advancements, regulatory challenges and marketplace competition, NTCA members are leading the technological evolution for rural consumers, delivering robust and high-quality services over future-proof networks that make rural communities vibrant places in which to live and do business. Because of their efforts, rural America is fertile ground for innovation in economic development, e-commerce, healthcare, agriculture, and education and contributes billions of dollars to the U.S. economy each year. Visit us at www.ntca.org.

2018 Annual Meeting of Citizens Telephone Cooperative was held on Saturday, October 20th, in the Floyd County High School Auditorium. Members of the Cooperative were greeted by Citizens employees and walked through the process of Co-op’s newest undertaking; the deployment of fiber optic technology.  A brightly colored map showed the fiber construction plan for the next few years. A professionally produced video detailed the phases of the fiber project; showing the installtion of the drop to the home and installation within the home and attendees were able to see the external and internal equipment for the fiber to the home project. In addition, employees were on-site to demonstrate and answer questions about products and services including Citizens Home Security and Automation.  Prior to the meeting, members filled the auditorium to enjoy entertainment by bluegrass band, Gate 10.

Board President Wesley Goff opened the meeting. The minutes from the last meeting were read by Secretary, Shelby Quesenberry and approved by the membership prior to the meeting being turned over to General Manager, Greg Sapp.  

Sapp recognized several long-time employees who had retired since the last meeting: Paula Harris retired with 29 years of service, Keith Bowman retired with 30 years of service, Dennis Whitlock retired with 37 years of service, and Ralph Beran retired with 44 years of service.  

General Manager, Sapp highlighted the company’s accomplishments for 2017 and shared visions of product and service enhancements for 2018, focusing on the company’s recent GIG Certification by the NTCA, The Rural Broadband Association.  Sapp stated that the upgrade in the network translates to providing speeds up to 600 times faster than existing service. “We believe that our 1 gig fiber broadband service to the home is like electric service. There is more than enough bandwidth to power as many simultaneous devices as you want. You don’t buy a new electric appliance and wonder if you have enough electriciity to power it. The same thought process should occur with internet connected devices,” stated Sapp. “We have customers today with over 25 internet devices in the home, which means they will probably have greater internet usage than the home with one or two devices. We could offer watered down speeds over fiber, but that would just postpone the inevitable. It is inevitable that with 4K or Ultra HD video, live  gaming, video conferencing and chatting, that a 50 Meg or even a 100 Meg service would not be sufficient in a few years. We are bringing you a newtork that will be the envy of everyone around.”

The map of Citizens’ fiber deployment plan is available at www.citizens.coop/fiberexpansion. The color-coded map shows the localities and the projected year that fiber will be constructed. Visitors to the site can enter their street address and scroll to street level to see an estimate of when fiber service will be deployed to their area. At the bottom of the webpage there are several useful links including how to estimate the amount of data your home needs and information to help determine if your home and devices are gigabite ready, and a link to Citizens’ Gigabit data packages.

Sapp complimented the Board of Directors (Wesley Goff, President, Lynwood Allen, Vice President, Shelby Quesenberry, Secretary, Daniel Grim, Kevin Hubbard, Russell Stump, Rhonda Turpin, Jonathan Vest, and Attorney, James Shortt) for their leadership in this project. Furthermore, he thanked the employees for their tireless work and dedication to help bring the next generation fiber network to the members.

Following Sapp’s comments, board member, Jonathan Vest, presented the election of directors Wesley Goff, Locust Grove exchange and Lynwood Allen, Floyd exchange. With no competition for the seats, the vote was carried. With no old or new business, the meeting continued with a random drawing for door prizes that included a 65 piece tool set, 4 tickets to the VT vs UVA football game, a programmable Instant Pot, LG Bluetooth speaker headset, Kwickset keyless entry lock, an Amazon Echo with Smart Bulb, a set of fire extinguishers, a laptop with carrying case, a Skybell video door bell, and a 55” 4K TV which was won by Kim Whitlock.

In closing, President Goff thanked the membership for their confidence and support and for being loyal customers. The meeting was adjourned and the members enjoyed a traditional fried chicken lunch served by the Floyd Presbyterian Ladies Group.

The Foundation for Rural Service is pleased to announce the second Rural Youth App Challenge. The challenge serves to engage with youth in rural America about serving and improving their communities through technology.

Help us spread the word to potential applicants. Share our app challenge flyer with your schools, social media and website.

The Challenge

Students will develop a concept for a mobile app that addresses a problem or improves a process in their rural community or in rural America at large. The challenge will be concept-based only and will be judged based on presentation and rigor of research. The concept must be possible and not already exist (but may be similar)

The Players

  • Students enrolled in grades 7 through 12
  • At least one student teammate must live in an area served by an NTCA—The Rural Broadband Association member company

Important Dates

Deadline for Submissions: March 1, 2019
Winners Announced: April 1, 2019

The Prize

The winning team will receive $1,000 in gift cards and Codecademy Scholarships.

Learn More Here

Invest in the Next Generation of Rural Leaders

It’s that time of year again. No, not holiday season—it’s time to get your local youth involved with the Foundation for Rural Service (FRS).

Today, FRS is releasing the applications for our 2019 Youth Tour and Scholarshipprograms:

  1. Youth Tour: If you haven’t yet sent a student on the Youth Tour, it’s an incredible way to showcase the value that your telco provides to your community. Please do make sure to register ASAP though—the tour will fill up quickly. 
     
  2. Scholarships: This year, thanks to our generous donors and sponsors, FRS will also be giving away an incredible $125,000 in scholarships in honor of our 25th Anniversary. An FRS scholarship is a life-changing, nationally-recognized award for a student in your service area.

Please, share these programs with schools in your service area today and please don’t hesitate to reach out to the FRS team at foundation@frs.org with any questions you might have.

Learn More Here

Recent fires in California tugged at the heartstrings of Floyd County natives, Jeff Belshan and Keith Bowman. So much so that the Belshan requested VTO (Volunteer Time Off) from his employer, Citizens Telephone Cooperative. Keith Bowman, a recently retired Citizens’ employee, also made the trip to with his former teammate and Jeff’s son, Matt.

Seven people lost their lives and over 1,000 homes were destroyed in the Carr fire. Belshan and Bowman were able to assist 10 families during the week that they were in Redding/Shasta County in California.  The relief efforts were organized by Samaritan’s Purse, a Christian international organization.

“I appreciate the opportunity given by Citizens to allow me to make this trip and assist those devastated by fire in California. It was a life changing experience for me and having 16 hours of VTO (Volunteer Time Off) is a huge benefit. It allowed me to help those in need and share an experience with my son that truly enriched my life.” stated Jeff Belshan. The groups helped remove rubble, debris, and sift through fire torched items to try to salvage memories of the victims.

Samaritans Purse has videos of the Carr fire on YouTube and shows how faith was strengthened through the fire and volunteerism.

To learn more about Samaritans Purse and how to get involved can visit the website at samaritanspurse.org.

Our collective backyard is pretty fantastic. With the Blue Ridge Parkway, The Crooked Road and all of the hiking and natural wonders within a two-hour drive, there’s plenty of adventure waiting right in our own backyard.

Beginning Friday, May 4, Citizens would like to encourage residents to explore these close-to-home areas and report back to us. Capture your day-trips with your smartphone or digital camera and share your footage with us. We will enter you into a random drawing for the chance to win an Amazon Dot, QVC gift certificates, and more.

Whether it’s a hike up Buffalo Mountain, a bike ride down the Virginia Creeper Trail, or a tour of a local farm or potter’s studio, we’d like to see what you see and hear what you think.

Submit 5-10 photos including at least one picture of you enjoying your day trip, up to 3 minutes of video, and a 100-300 word paragraph sharing the highlights of your adventure, and we’ll edit it into a 1-2 minute video. With your permission, we’ll share these videos on Citizens CCTV Channel 20. Inspire your neighbors to get out and explore!

Visit citizens.coop/backyard-adventures to upload your photos and/or video, and your short paragraph about the location or adventure. You might win a nice prize for your efforts. Best of all, you can give viewers ideas of where they should visit on their own next adventure.

Start uploading May 4. Contest deadline is Sept. 15th.

CCTV Channel 20 is an exclusive local channel available only on Citizens Cablevision. Catch local sports, church programming and “The Community Show” produced by Hari Berzins. The following programs will air on “The Community Show” throughout the month of May. “The Community Show” airs 7 am, 1:30 pm, and 7 pm daily. Set your PVR so you don’t miss an episode.

  • Indian Valley Kindergartners learn about Floyd History with Janet Keith and Alice Slusher
  • From the Front Porch to the Front Lines, DVD Release Presentation with Dr. Melinda Wagner, Radford University. Featuring stories from local WWII Veterans.
  • What Can I Do About Lyme Disease? Panel Discussion from Floyd Health & Wellness Fair
  • Blue Ridge Story Space, Celebrating the Mountain Tradition of Storytelling
  • Curtis Turner Birthplace Marker Unveiling
  • Walk a Mile With Healthy Floyd
  • Gentle Yoga with Studio 221

The mission of CCTV is to capture what matters to you. If you have an interest in showcasing your business, civic group, or community project, contact Hari Berzins, Video Production Editor by calling 745.9552 or email marketing@citizens.coop. Sponsorship opportunities are available to advertise your business during local programming. For more information, contact Citizens at 540-745-2111 or 276-637-6485.

Floyd County High School’s graduating Class of 2018 will be held on Friday, May 25. The ceremony will take place inside the school’s gym with overflow seating in the school auditorium. For those unable to attend the ceremony, Citizens Cablevision will stream the festivities live on CCTV, Channel 20 and on Citizens Telephone Coop Facebook. Rebroadcast of the ceremony will be played throughout the month of June.

A professionally produced, high-quality video and audio, keepsake DVD is available for purchase at https://stage.myswva.com/graduation/​ or by calling Citizens at 540.745.2111.

The mission of CCTV is to capture what matters to you. If you have an interest in showcasing your business, civic group, or community project, contact Hari Berzins, Video Production Editor by calling 745.9552 or email
marketing@citizens.coop . Sponsorship opportunities are available to advertise your business during local programming. For more information, contact Citizens at 540-745-2111 or 276-637-6485.

Citizens is proud to announce the following Scholarship opportunities:

Foundation for Rural Service Scholarship:

The Foundation for Rural Service (FRS) offers an annual college scholarship program to help further higher education among rural youth. FRS awards a one-time $2,500 scholarships to students from rural America for their first year of college, university or vocational-technical school. Each student is sponsored by an NTCA member company. FRS funds $2,000 of each scholarship, and the sponsoring company awards the remaining $500. The FRS College Scholarship Program seeks to encourage students to return to their rural communities upon completing their education.

Sponsoring a student for the annual FRS College Scholarship Program is a one-time investment that will last a lifetime. The program empowers rural youth by giving them opportunities for higher education. Our hope is that these students return to rural America to enhance and enrich their rural community with education and experience.

The application for the FRS College Scholarship Program is available each October for the following year’s program. Applications must be postmarked to FRS by March 1st of each year and winners will be announced by May 1st of that year.

Download the application here and more information about the Foundation for Rural Services Youth Program Scholarship can be found here

Virginia Cable Telecommunications Association Scholarship:

The VCTA and the Donald A. Perry Foundation are very excited to announce the launch of our 2017 Virginia’s Future Leaders Scholarship Program. This year we will be awarding $100,000 to Virginia students in partnership with you, our members. Please find attached the 2017 Application and Rules, as well as our press release. These materials can also be found on our website at www.vcta.com.

The deadline for this year’s program is April 24, 2017. The Virginia’s Future Leader’s Scholarship is open to Virginia residents only, attending an undergraduate 2 or 4 year program at a Virginia institution of higher learning for the 2017-2018 academic year.

Download the Virginia Cable Telecommunications Association Scholarship application here.

 

Citizens announced they will partner with Cell Phones for Soldiers to collect gently used smartphones, feature phones or tablets to benefit US troops and veterans. Recognized for their efforts to connect military members serving around the globe, Cell Phones for Soldiers Co-Founders Robbie and Brittany Bergquist were recently honored in Forbes 30 Under 30 Class of 2017. This highly competitive award recognizes America’s young entrepreneurs and included over 15,000 nominations for 600 spots.
“Partnering with Cell Phones for Soldiers on our phone collection campaign allows our customers wanting to upgrade to a new phone to assist our troops and veterans at the same time,” stated Lori Saltus, EVP of Customer Relations & Marketing for Citizens. Customers and community members wanting to donate their phone may visit any Citizens’ location. For more information on Cell Phones for Soldiers, visit ​www.cellphonesforsoldiers.com​.

Customers of Citizens Cablevision now have the opportunity to view local church services. According to Hari Berzins, Video Production Editor of Citizens, four local churches have committed to supplying pre-recorded church services to be uploaded to the company’s CCTV Channel 20.  

Citizens posts the weekly programming schedule online at https://stage.myswva.com/cctv/ and on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/citizenstelephone/?ref=aymt_homepage_panel.  Current programming is as follows:

  • Saturdays: 9:00am: Beaver Creek Church of the Brethren, Pastor Marvin Wade
  • 9:30am: The Seventh Day: Revelations From the Lost Pages of History
  • Sundays: 8:30am: Beaver Creek Church of the Brethren, Pastor Marvin Wade
  • 9:00am: Faith Baptist Church, Pastor Warren Brown
  • 5:30pm: The Seventh Day: Revelations From the Lost Pages of History
  • 6:30pm: Shawsville Congregational Holiness Church, Pastor Wes Conner

The new programming is available to viewers of Citizens Cablevision in Floyd, Ft. Chiswell, and New Castle.   For more information about the new Citizens TV service visit www.citizens.coop, stop by the office located at 220 Webbs Mill Road in Floyd, or call 540.745.2111/276.637.6485. Any church interested in submitting services should contact Emily Gruver at 540.745.9552 or hariberzins@citizens.coop for instructions on how to upload services.

Citizens is a locally-owned Cooperative located in Floyd, VA, providing quality service, excellent support and advanced technology. Citizens offers voice, video, data, and security solutions to residents and businesses in Floyd, Ft. Chiswell and New Castle.

Next week on April 20th, Plenty! is holding two separate events in support of the Community Foundation of the New River Valley GiveBigNRV campaign. Plenty! welcomes all of their friends and neighbors to come out and support it’s mission to help feed hungry neighbors in Floyd County. First, folks can enjoy a free meal at Plenty!’s Community Lunch which will have fresh, homemade soup, bread and dessert starting at noon on Wednesday April 20th. Most of the ingredients for the meal are either grown on the Plenty! Farm or donated by local farmers.  If you are not able to make the lunch, Plenty! invites you to stop by later in the day between 4 and 6pm for refreshments and a tour of the farm. Individuals are welcome to walk the farm and learn about all the different programs Plenty! is doing in the local community.  Jonathan Vandergrift, Plenty! Director, stated “there are many great non-profits and charities in the area participating in this campaign and I hope everyone in Floyd County reaches out and supports their favorite organization on April 20th.” Plenty! is proud to be a part of GiveBigNRV, an initiative of the Community Foundation of the New River Valley. Plenty! is located at 192 Elephant Curve Road, Floyd off Route 8. For more information about GiveBigNRV please visit https://cfnrv.givebig.org or about Plenty! www.plentylocal.org.

Citizens is proud to announce the following Scholarship opportunities:

Foundation for Rural Service Scholarship:

The Foundation for Rural Service (FRS) offers an annual college scholarship program to help further higher education among rural youth. FRS awards a one-time $2,500 scholarships to students from rural America for their first year of college, university or vocational-technical school. Each student is sponsored by an NTCA member company.

The application for the FRS College Scholarship Program is available each October for the following year’s program. Applications must be postmarked to FRS by March 3rd of each year and winners will be announced by May 1st of that year.

Foundation for Rural Services Youth Program frs.org

Virginia Cable Telecommunications Association Scholarship:

 

The VCTA and the Donald A. Perry Foundation are launching the 2016 Virginia’s Future Leaders Scholarship Program. This year they will be awarding $100,000 to Virginia students. Please find the 2016 Application and Rules, as well as their press release at vcta.com.

The deadline for this year’s program is April 24, 2016. The Virginia’s Future Leader’s Scholarship is open to Virginia residents only, attending an undergraduate 2 or 4 year program at a Virginia institution of higher learning for the 2016-2017 academic year.

Virginia’s Future Leaders Scholarship Program ​vcta.com

Millions of Phishing attacks are attempted daily. What is a Phishing? Phishing is the process in which an individual is targeted by email or telephone by someone posing as a legitimate institution in order to gain personal information of the target. This information can then be used to access a customer’s account and can result in identity theft and financial loss.

Personal Information a Phishing attack may try to gain:

  • Email address and password
  • Social security number
  • Bank information
  • Credit card information
  • Any other personal information that may be of benefit

Citizens would like to provide the following tips to help avoid these Phishing attacks:

  1. Never give out any personal information to anyone you don’t know
  2. Be suspicious of links in emails and pop-ups on websites that ask for personal information
  3. Be suspicious of email attachments and never download email attachments from an unknown sender
  4.  Be suspicious of emails that have grammar and spelling mistakes.
  5. Be suspicious of random phone calls from companies asking for personal information.
  6. Lastly, be cautious when giving out personal information via email, websites, or over the phone.  If something does not feel right, it probably isn’t.

Visit the following website for more information and tips for Phishing attacks.
http://www.phishing.org/scams/prevent-phishing/

Remember Citizens will never ask for personal information via email.

Citizens is proud to announce the following Scholarship opportunities:

Foundation for Rural Service Scholarship:

The Foundation for Rural Service (FRS) offers an annual college scholarship program to help further higher education among rural youth. FRS awards a one-time $2,500 scholarships to students from rural America for their first year of college, university or vocational-technical school. Each student is sponsored by an NTCA member company.

The application for the FRS College Scholarship Program is available each October for the following year’s program. Applications must be postmarked to FRS by March 3rd of each year and winners will be announced by May 1st of that year.

Foundation for Rural Services Youth Program frs.org

Virginia Cable Telecommunications Association Scholarship:

 

The VCTA and the Donald A. Perry Foundation are launching the 2015 Virginia’s Future Leaders Scholarship Program. This year they will be awarding $100,000 to Virginia students. Please find the 2015 Application and Rules, as well as their press release at vcta.com.

The deadline for this year’s program is April 24, 2015. The Virginia’s Future Leader’s Scholarship is open to Virginia residents only, attending an undergraduate 2 or 4 year program at a Virginia institution of higher learning for the 2015-2016 academic year.

Virginia’s Future Leaders Scholarship Program ​vcta.com

FLOYD, VA – Citizens Telephone Cooperative (Citizens) recently announced plans to upgrade facilities to increase broadband speeds in its service areas. “It’s been in our plans for several years now and we have recently started the construction phase. Increasing broadband speeds in our service area is necessary to meet our customer demands for faster Internet connections and increases opportunities for economic development. Increased speeds will be achieved through a variety of technologies with the new top download speed of 100Mbps for residential customers. The current top speed available to our Business Ethernet customers is 10Gbps (10,000Mbps) symmetrical and we are working to increase that to 100Gbps (100,000Mbps). The deployment of these technologies provides flexibility for future products and services requested by customers” stated Greg Sapp, CEO & General Manager of the Cooperative.

 
The investment in upgrades is costly for Citizens, but is necessary to continue our cooperative mission. Eligible subscribers will see their speeds increase, but will not see rate increases unless they opt for even higher speed services.

 
“Citizens continually monitors technology and innovation to determine the viability of future offerings for our subscribers. This project will be handled in phases and will be marketed as a CitiZip branded service to highlight the greater speeds. The first phase will occur in and around the Town of Floyd with available download speeds of 10Mbps, 25Mbps, 50Mbps, and 100Mbps. Upgrade plans within the town limits will be shared at an upcoming Town Council Meeting with deployment set to begin in September 2014 stated Dennis Reece, COO and Assistant General Manager.”

 
Citizens Telephone Cooperative is a full service provider of residential and business landline and cellular telephone service, high speed Internet services and digital video services. Analog cable is also provided in portions of its service area. PC Repair, virus protection, web design and hosting services are also available. Systematical Business Ethernet is also available as well as Home Security and Citizens Medical Alert.

theblaze_logo_2x

Starting Monday June 2, 2014 Citizens will be offering The Blaze

Citizens, a full-service communications, and entertainment provider headquartered in Floyd, Virginia announced today that the veteran, rural, landline telephone company will once again provide cellular phone service to Floyd County and surrounding communities. The locally-owned Cooperative will be a carrier on the largest national cellular network and will offer a variety of cell phones and calling plans for individuals and businesses.

“Our former wireless agent agreement was dissolved over a year and a half ago. Since that time, we have had numerous requests to offer cellular service again.” stated Lori Saltus, Citizens’ EVP of Customer Relations. “One of the many benefits of being a member of a Cooperative is that we are local and we LISTEN to our customers. We are happy to announce that Citizens is once again serving cellular phone service.”

Citizens Cellular calling plans range from a $9.99 Talk Any Time “pay as you go” to Unlimited Talk, Text & Data for Individual and Share Plans. The company will have plans suited for all levels of use and complexity. Majority of calling plans include “Anytime” minutes and offer Unlimited Nights and Weekend minutes. In fact, Citizens Wireless provides customers with additional 120 minutes per day of night calling by extended calling times from 7 p.m. – 5:59 a.m. (most national night and weekend call provider’s hours are 9:00 p.m. to 6 a.m.).

Most call plans offered by Citizens include free Mobile-to-Mobile minutes to ANYONE on the nation-wide network; not just between Citizens cellular customers. “We realize wireless is becoming a way of life.” stated Greg Sapp, Citizens General Manager. “We want to offer affordable means to have communication services when and where you need it. It’s not a big profit maker, but it’s the matter of bringing it all together for our customers on one convenient monthly invoice with discounts for multiple services. It’s not necessary to deal with the national companies any longer, when you can receive the same nationwide coverage, competitive calling plans, calling features, and customer support locally,” says Sapp.

For more information, contact Citizens at 540.745.2111 in Floyd; in Ft. Chiswell call 276.637.6485.

communityShow

Citizens, your local voice, video, and data provider recently announced the launch of a daily community show scheduled to air on Citizens Digital Channel 20, Analog Channel 2 beginning Thursday, September 12, 2013. “The Community Show is a show about the community for the community” stated Casey Worley, Anchor of The Community Show.

The Community Show is designed to air daily and will be played at 9am Thursday through Wednesday. New weekly programming will begin on Thursday of each week giving highlights to many weekend events in the area.

Citizens is partnering Tri-Cities Newspaper; parent company of The Floyd Press and The Enterprise in Wythe County for news and sports to create informational and entertaining programming. The Community Show will have three segments: What’s Going On — a community calendar of events; Sports Action — a schedule and highlights of seasonal local sports; Something to Chat About — a segment focused on events and activities in the communities surrounding Floyd and Ft.Chiswell.

“Citizens wants to bring it all together for our viewers and the residents in the markets we serve (in Floyd and Ft. Chiswell) stated Lori Saltus, EVP of Customer Relations. Citizens was founded by involved community members and we carry on that same dedication by creating a television show dedicated to our community.”

Citizens began this venture several years ago by recording and rebroadcasting Floyd County High School Football and the Floyd County Christmas Parade. Most recently, Citizens broadcast the Class of 2013 Floyd County High School Graduation. Citizens continues with football and has added volleyball for the 2013-2014 season. Plans are to capture Spring sports, community events and more.

“I look forward to working with members of the community to share the good news that is taking place in our areas. We welcome pre-produced content and will work to produce a quality segment for our viewers.” stated Worley.

For more information or to order a DVD of a select game or a season, contact Citizens at
540-745-2111 or email DVD@citizens.coop. Tune in to Citizens TV Channel 20 (Analog Channel 2) to keep up to date on the latest programming.