Ritchie Sorrells was named GVTC's president and chief executive officer in 2003 and led a change in business strategy and corporate culture to evolve the company from a monopolistic telephone cooperative to a highly competitive, full-service communications provider. The cornerstone for this strategic shift was a multimillion dollar investment to replace much of its copper network with cutting edge fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) technology. As a result, the company is now the leading provider of FTTH to residential and business customers in far North San Antonio and the Texas Hill Country.
Due to wireless substitution, traditional telephone companies are faced with the challenge of finding new revenue sources to replace steadily declining landline sales. Under Sorrells' strategic vision, GVTC was among the first to anticipate this industry shift. The company responded by leveraging its fiber network to create an array of value-added products for its customers that includes fast internet connections, up to one gigabit, and the area’s only broadband symmetrical product.
In 2016, the company launched its wholesale services business to capitalize on the rapidly growing data transport market. GVTC built a redundant fiber ring capable of transporting large amounts of data between San Antonio, Austin and smaller markets, in its service territory. Through partnerships with regional telecommunication companies, GVTC sells data transport services, beyond its South Central Texas territory, into Dallas, Houston and internationally into Mexico. GVTC also has several agreements to deliver Fiber-to-the-Tower backhaul for wireless communications companies.
Under Sorrells leadership GVTC has earned several prestigious industry awards. In 2016, GVTC was named a Top 100 Fiber to the Home Company by Broadband Communities Magazine, for nine consecutive years. It was selected a 2015 Top Operator by CableFAX The Magazine and received the 2014 Broadband Vision Award for Service Provider by the Broadband Multimedia Marketing Association. Furthermore, the company has won numerous “Top Workplaces” and “Best Places to Work” awards.
In 2007, Mr. Sorrells established The GVTC Foundation to enhance the quality of life throughout the communities it serves. Ten years later, the Foundation surpassed more than $2,000,000 in donations to local nonprofits. More than 85 percent of the company’s employees contribute through payroll deductions.
Mr. Sorrells began his telecommunications career with ALLTEL in 1977 and served in a variety of executive assignments in Arkansas, Oklahoma, Mississippi and Texas.
An Arkansas native, Mr. Sorrells holds a bachelor of science in education from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville.