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Grads Info

As of 2004

Name:  Keith Cheshire

E-Mail: kcheshire@se.rr.com

Spouse: LaVerne Villeneuve

Address: 

Living In: East Palatka, Fl Cell 919-414-8939

Occupation: Retired

Years Married:

Children:

Grandchildren:

Other:

Throughout high school, some may remember that my major interest was the field of telecommunications. Telephony was my target vocation when I entered the U of F after high school graduation. Unfortunately, my old “do what is necessary to get by” study habits from high school were not tolerated at the U of F and after a year or so, I returned home.

Next, I joined the Florida Air National Guard where I received training in aviation electronics. I returned home, and to my joy, I was soon offered a technical job with a telephone company in N. FL. I moved back to North Florida, took the job and shortly afterward, married my college girlfriend from Gainesville, LaVerne Villeneuve. (38 years and counting!)



LaVerne encouraged me to return to school and I began night courses at Santa Fe Community College in Gainesville while working days at North Florida Telephone Company. When I completed my AA, I went part-time with the phone company and re-enrolled in the U of F to continue my education. In 1972, I received my BSBA in Business Administration and shortly thereafter, I advanced into a managerial position at the North Florida Telephone Company (now ALLTEL FL) in Live Oak, FL. Three years later, I was promoted to Chief Engineer, truly my dream job. In the late 70’s the company moved us to Charlotte, NC where I supervised engineering and long range planning for Mid-Continent Telephone Corporation’s six state Southern Region. (Mid-Continent later became ALLTEL Corp.)



Overall, I spent 16 ˝ + years with that group of affiliates, but the bug to do something “on my own” bit me and we left North Carolina, moved back to the Gainesville, FL area and opened “Cheshire Electronics & Communications” in High Springs, FL. We (LaVerne and I) operated our business for three years until I received an opportunity to join Nortel Networks, a very large telecommunications manufacturer in Research Triangle Park, NC.



I spent the next 20 years with NT where I worked as a Technical Support Manager and later Director providing telecommunications consulting support to our sales staff. In my positions at Nortel, my principle job was to provide technical updates and network design recommendations to the engineers, managers and owners of telephone companies large and small across the U.S. and Canada. Over the past 30+ years, I have given hundreds and hundreds of customized presentations and/or formal speeches to telcos large and small. I love telephony and always enjoyed discussing it with others.


I truly enjoyed my roles, both at North Florida and at Nortel; I was blessed with almost a 40-year career in my chosen field. In fact, it has been more of a hobby experience than a job, but despite my love of telecommunications, I know I could not have achieved those successes without the support and encouragement of my family.



LaVerne and I retired 1n 2002, departed NC and returned to Fl. Although we still have a cabin in Zionville, in the NC Mountains, we now live on the St. Johns River near Palatka, FL. We have two children, a married daughter Cheryl Cheshire Stallworth who is a medical technician at RTI in Alachua, FL and a son Coye who is completing his PhD. in Sociology at Leland Stanford University in Palo Alto, CA.