Eugene, Oregon has been chosen as Mozilla’s next Gigabit City. Eugene joins Austin, Kansas City, and Chattanooga in this prestigious distinction. In addition to the national recognition, the honor also comes with $150,000 of grant funding for local initiatives that increase participation in technology innovation.
Eugene’s Mayor, Lucy Vinis, noted “The City of Eugene has a long history of innovation. We are the birthplace of Nike, the home of a world-class university and the heart of the region’s tech and creative sector, known as the Silicon Shire. With Mozilla’s partnership and our emerging gigabit infrastructure, we look forward to ushering in our next generation of entrepreneurs, innovators, artists, and educators. We are excited to make new connections with other Mozilla Gigabit cities across the nation and to share our successes with the world”.
“Eugene’s overnight success has been decades in the making. Tireless efforts from community leaders have created a business environment here that supports the hundreds of high growth tech companies that call our region home. The ‘Mozilla Gigabit City’ selection strengthens greater Eugene’s reputation as a west coast tech hub. With Mozilla’s partnership, our focus is now on helping the entire region fully leverage our world-class internet infrastructure” said Matt Sayre, Director of the Technology Association of Oregon.
Mozilla -- the nonprofit behind the Firefox web browser -- believes the Internet should be a global public resource that is open and accessible to all. Eugene, along with Lafayette, Louisiana, was selected from 48 cities across the country that applied. Eugene’s supportive startup ecosystem, collaborative tech community, and unique approach to bringing world-class gigabit internet to the region stood out among the competition. “Eugene is at a tipping point and Mozilla’s partnership here stands to have a very positive impact in furthering Mozilla’s mission to ensure the Internet is a global public resource, open and accessible to all” said Jenn Beard, Mozilla Gigabit Fund Manager. Eugene is at the center of a 1,200 mile publicly owned open-access fiber optic network called EUGNet www.eugnet.org
Mozilla will provide grant funds that will be used to launch education and workforce development efforts that harness gigabit technologies. The first Request For Proposals (RFP) cycle will open this spring. Grants typically range from $5K-$30K for 16-week pilots.
Eugene’s technology sector continues to gain recognition nationally, including being named ‘Top 10 Up-and-Coming Cities for Tech Jobs’ in the nation by ZipRecruiter in 2015.
The nonprofit Mozilla Foundation believes the Internet must always remain a global public resource that is open and accessible to all. Its work is guided by the Mozilla Manifesto. The direct work of the Mozilla Foundation focuses on fueling the movement for an open Internet. It does this by connecting open Internet leaders with each other and by mobilizing grassroots activists around the world. The Foundation is also the sole shareholder in the Mozilla Corporation, the maker of Firefox and other open source tools. Mozilla Corporation functions as a self-sustaining social enterprise – money earned through its products is reinvested into the organization.
About the Technology Association of Oregon
Technology Association of Oregon is a local nonprofit working to build opportunities, better our economy and unify a voice for innovation in Oregon and beyond. A recognized leader in shaping and growing technology and business communities, TAO empowers businesses and entrepreneurs through networks, events, advocacy, resources and more. With over 400 member-companies, TAO’s network brings together some of the largest companies in the world, small startups, and tech-enabled companies that are using technology to drive growth and innovation. For more information please visit www.techoregon.org