Thomas Bechtel was born in Findlay, Ohio and grew up in NW Ohio. Thomas has been employed in the telecommunications industry for over 38 years. After graduating Arcadia High School he began his career in telecommunications in 1972 as an Installer/Repairman with The Arcadia Telephone Company, a small Local Exchange Carrier in rural northwestern Ohio. Arcadia Telephone had been acquired in 1971 by the then start-up holding company Telephone and Data Systems. Thomas held a variety of different positions during his career with TDS. Beginning as Installer/Repair then Central Office Technician and in 1978 was named General Manager of The Arcadia Telephone Company.
In 1980, Thomas was promoted to State Manger for TDS responsible for managing TDS exchanges in Ohio and reporting to the TDS Mid-Central Region Manager in Roachdale, IN. Starting in 1992 Thomas accepted the position of Regional Network Operations Manager for Ohio, Michigan, and Indiana, relocating from Fostoria, Ohio to Jamestown, IN and reported to work at TDS Mid-Central Region Office at Roachdale, IN. Thomas was in Network Operations until Aug. 1999. After which he was promoted to Network Architect, reporting to TDS Telecom’s VP of Network Services in Madison, WI. Thomas held the position of Network Architect with TDS Telecom until Dec. 2009 when he accepted an early retirement incentive package from TDS Telecom. Thomas accepted the position of Director of Planning & Facilities with Indiana Fiber Networks, LLC and has begun his second career in communications Jan. 04, 2010.
During his 38 year career, he has served on various committees within state and national organizations including Chairman of the USTA Network Evolution Sub-Committee, Member of OPASTCO Technical Committee and a member of Ohio Telecommunications Association Technical Committee.
In addition to serving on various technical committees and attending many technical training courses, Thomas has taken numerous management development classes at Ohio State University, Purdue University, University of Wisconsin-Madison, University of Kansas and IUPUI.
Thomas now resides just outside of Indianapolis in Brownsburg with his wife Nancy. They have three daughters; Tracey age 39 who lives in Jacksonville, FL, Jill age 34 lives in Findlay, OH and Angie Landrum, 28 who lives in Broad Ripple, IN with her husband Shayne and daughter Katherine Jayne, 14 months.