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Derek Pew L'93
BY ANDY GREENBERG
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FIVE ALL-STARS
Evan Kohlmann L'04
Eric Rothschild L'93
Miguel Rodriguez C'94 L'99
Derek Pew L'93
Aretha Delight Davis L'97
Philadelphia, the cradle of the Constitution, is about to get a dose of digital democracy. When wireless access nodes installed on telephone poles throughout the city are switched on in just a few months, Philadelphia will be the first major urban area in the country to offer universal wireless Internet access: One city, under an enormous, invisible umbrella of streaming highspeed broadband, with liberty and e-mail for all.

At the helm of this wireless revolution has been Derek Pew L’93, former CEO of, and now consultant to, the nonprofit Wireless Philadelphia. Appointed by Mayor Street to create this network, it has been Pew’s responsibility to make the Internet as ubiquitous as radio and television. For the 40-year-old lawyer, entrepreneur and closet nonprofit innovator, the project of bringing the net to all Philadelphians is nothing less than a necessary equalizer in America’s increasingly disparate—and digital— class structure.
 
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