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Verizon Wireless CEO Mead to take over as CTIA chairman after Dillon's departure

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Verizon Wireless (NYSE:VZ) CEO Dan Mead will become the new chairman of the CTIA, succeeding Mary Dillon, who this weekend stepped down as CEO of U.S. Cellular (NYSE:USM), the CTIA confirmed.

CTIA spokeswoman Amy Storey confirmed the changes to FierceWireless. Mead had been acting as vice chairman of the trade association's executive committee. It was not immediately clear who will take Mead's place on the board as vice chair. Storey said the executive committee will fill the vacancy by electing a new vice chairman, but did not give a timeline for when that will happen. 

Dillon stepped down to become CEO of Ulta Salon Cosmetics & Fragrance, effective on July 1. She was replaced by Kenneth Meyers, a longtime wireless and telecom executive and a veteran of Telephone & Data Systems, U.S. Cellular's parent company.

The trade group's executive officers were elected last December and have been serving one-year terms since Jan. 1. CTIA chairs are the most visible wireless industry executives within the organization and help promote the group's policy goals. Storey said that while it is rare for a chair to resign during the middle of their tenure, it has happened in the past. She declined to comment further.

Additionally, Story said that since CTIA's agenda is established at the start of the year with CTIA President Steve Largent and the rest of the board of directors, "there will be no change to CTIA's activities or priorities." The board is made up of 32 executives and the executive committee had five officers, as well as Largent, before Dillon's resignation.

CTIA has a high-stakes year ahead as an organization. The group will continue to lobby for more spectrum to be freed up for wireless carriers, but a major task will be to build momentum for its "Super Mobility Week" in 2014. Although CTIA will hold its MobileCon conference in San Jose, Calif., on Oct. 16-18, that will be the last standalone show the group does in the fall. For the fall of 2014, CTIA is combining its two shows and also partnering with other groups, including IFA, the Competitive Carriers Association and 4G World, to create what is being billed as a one-stop-shop trade show for the wireless industry, dubbed "Super Mobility Week," Sept. 9-11, 2014, in Las Vegas.

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