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JAN 13, 2020 | US

BSA Launches State Advocacy Program

Tom Foulkes to lead state-based initiative focused on privacy and workforce policy

WASHINGTON – January 13, 2020 – BSA | The Software Alliance today announced the launch of its first-ever state advocacy program. The initiative comes at a time when lawmakers at all levels are grappling with complex tech issues, and states are becoming more involved in crafting technology policy and regulations.

“BSA has led policy and advocacy efforts at the global and US federal level for more than thirty years. We’re proud to serve as a responsible and trusted advisor on issues ranging from privacy to trade, cybersecurity, and artificial intelligence. Now is the time to make our mark in the states,” said Victoria Espinel, President and CEO of BSA | The Software Alliance. “As states move forward on issues that impact software, it’s important for BSA to engage with state policymakers to help craft smart, effective long-term solutions that provide a high standard of protection for consumer rights. The launch of BSA’s state advocacy program is an opportunity for us to expand and deepen our engagement on issues that impact the software industry.”

Over the past few years, California, Washington, New York, and several other states have become increasingly involved in driving consumer privacy legislation. BSA’s state advocacy program will focus on privacy and workforce development.

Consumers deserve modern privacy rules where they can control their data and trust how it is used. BSA is committed to finding a lasting privacy solution – one that is satisfying for consumers, business, and governments. BSA member companies don’t rely on monetization of data and therefore support strong privacy protections. Clear, comprehensive legislation that protects consumer rights is the best path forward.

As the software industry continues to drive growth and innovation across the country, workforce development has become a higher priority for state governments. In 2018 alone, the software industry supported 14.4 million US jobs and contributed $1.6 trillion in value-added GDP to the national economy. BSA will work with state leaders to support initiatives to ensure that people of all backgrounds in all areas of the country can take advantage of these job opportunities.

The state effort will be led by Tom Foulkes, who joins BSA today as Senior Director of State Advocacy. Based in Washington, DC, Tom will work closely with BSA’s legislative strategy and policy teams to build out the program, representing BSA and its member companies before state legislatures, agencies, and relevant coalitions. Tom comes to BSA from the Entertainment Software Association (ESA) in Washington, DC, where as Vice President, State Government Affairs since 2011, he was the lead advocate representing all state and local-level policy issues impacting the domestic computer and video game industry.

“We’re thrilled to have Tom join the BSA team,” said Craig Albright, Vice President, Legislative Strategy at BSA | The Software Alliance. “Tom’s many years of experience managing national state advocacy programs will be invaluable as we work to expand BSA’s visibility and impact at the state level.”

Explore BSA’s policy priorities here.

ABOUT BSA

BSA | The Software Alliance (www.bsa.org) is the leading advocate for the global software industry before governments and in the international marketplace. Its members are among the world’s most innovative companies, creating software solutions that spark the economy and improve modern life.

With headquarters in Washington, DC, and operations in more than 30 countries, BSA pioneers compliance programs that promote legal software use and advocates for public policies that foster technology innovation and drive growth in the digital economy.

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Email: annah@bsa.org