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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 20, 2001

Governor Reaffirms Vision of the Illinois Century Network, New Director is Named

SPRINGFIELD -- Governor George H. Ryan continues his commitment to promote and support the establishment and expansion of the Illinois Century Network (ICN), a high-speed telecommunications network providing access to data, video, and audio communication in schools, libraries, colleges, universities, museums, and municipal government.

"The Illinois Century Network is a critical piece of our state's infrastructure and is developing as important a transportation system for our economy as our highways, railways and airports," said Governor Ryan. "Now we are ready to shift the real focus to the actual applications that can be accomplished over a robust, high-speed network in areas such as education, training, research, e-commerce and medicine."

The Illinois Century Network Policy Committee, established in 1999 by Public Act 91-0021, has chosen H. Neil Matkin as the Chief Administrative Officer of the Illinois Century Network.

For the past 18 months Neil served as Co-Director of the Network. He was part of the team that created Regional Technology Centers, fostered creation of the Advanced Engineering Taskforce and Regional User Groups to provide guidance for the network and promoted expansion of the network statewide. Since 1997, Matkin has served as Senior Associate Director for Information Services at the Illinois Board of Higher Education.

The ICN currently serves approximately 4,000 school buildings, colleges, universities, libraries, museums, government offices and entities. Information regarding the Illinois Century Network can be obtained at the website: http://www.illinois.net/



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