Great America Networks Conferencing Launch Benefits Relief Efforts

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Group sends volunteers, offers free conferencing services to relief workers and donates percentage of profits.

Newly-launched Great America Networks Conferencing, LLC, a subsidiary of Great America Networks, Inc., the sister company of BTI Communications Group, Ltd., is offering its audio and video conferencing solutions as well as Web-based collaboration applications free of charge to aid relief workers in Louisiana and Mississippi in coordinating rescue and clean up efforts following Hurricane Katrina. Additionally, beginning today until further notice, 10 percent of every new conferencing sale will be donated to charities involved in the relief efforts.

"Countless numbers of relief workers are descending on the devastated areas and overwhelming conventional phone networks," says Reno Provine, President for Great America Networks Conferencing, LLC, and Chief Operations Officer for BTI Communications Group, Ltd. "In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, and throughout the long road that lay ahead for the displaced residents of the Gulf Coast area, BTI and Great America Networks pledge to assist in any way possible, including providing conferencing and telecommunications services at no charge to various relief organizations, as well as generous monetary and supply gifts."

"Over the Holiday weekend, BTI put together a relief team that flew out during this crisis scenario to assist on-site with those who desperately need help. This team consisted of Eric Brackett, Chief Executive Officer of BTI, several key employees and their family members who generously volunteered not only their time and finances, but braved the unknown of the New Orleans area and selflessly put others lives and needs ahead of their own,” Provine added. “It is dedication like this that makes BTI a real family-oriented company, and acts of this nature will set a precedence for all companies and individuals to follow."

Returning members of the BTI Relief Team describe the experience as more than just handing out food, water and supplies to survivors. It was about lifting spirits and bringing smiles back into their faces.

"We worked on two different teams, one in St. Charles Parish, and the other one at one of the first Scientology Volunteer Ministry base in New Orleans… Our people didn’t just hand out food and water, we carried out conversations, got people smiling, took them out of their grief and brought them up to present time," says Brackett. "I saw immediate relief and physical change in people that we helped in as little as a minute. We served thousands of families each day we were there."

Brackett continued, "The Scientology Volunteer Ministers are providing organized effective relief where it is needed most in Louisiana. In BTI’s group, Scientologists and non-Scientologists banded together to create change under the leadership and organizational structure of the Volunteer Ministers in concert with the police and the Parish Emergency Operations Personnel."

Patricia Gutierrez, Customer Account Representative for BTI’s Los Angeles branch, went into New Orleans to perform Nerve Assists on the overwhelmed and drained New Orleans Police Officers who were working to bring order and aid to the victims. A Nerve Assist is a technique that applies a healing touch and light pressure to the main nerves running down the spine and branching out into smaller nerve channels and nerve endings that affect muscles.

"At one point an officer tearing up in front of me asked for a Nerve Assist because he had a pounding headache. By the end of the Assist, the tension, tears and frustration I first saw in him were all gone and he walked away thanking me," Gutierrez said. "Most were so amazed that such a simple procedure could work. I felt so proud that I could help."

Dave Hamilton, sales consultant for BTI’s Chicago branch, shared his take on the experience: "This was my first time volunteering for a humanitarian relief effort. I was overwhelmed by the organization, cooperation and teamwork necessary to provide the support needed and wanted by those within New Orleans and the surrounding areas… I felt proud for being a part of the aid efforts and could see the appreciation on the faces of the people we were there to support. I was deeply moved by the whole experience and will do it again."

About Great America Networks

Great America Networks Conferencing, LLC, the conferencing and collaboration subsidiary of Great America Networks, Inc. (GAN), was created to add audio and video conferencing and Web collaboration tools to small- and medium-sized businesses worldwide rounding out GAN’s service offerings to provide BTI’s client base with a one-stop solution for all of their telecommunications needs.

Great America Networks, the sister company of BTI Communications Group, Ltd., was started in 2002 to provide reliable and cost-effective local and long distance service. GAN is licensed to service California, Illinois, Nevada, New Hampshire, New York, Texas and Illinois and is continually working to expand its service areas.

Prior to GAN’s inception, BTI offered both local and long distance service, as a sales agent for other carriers for voice, video and communication needs for businesses. Due to limited control over quality of service as an agent, BTI created GAN to provide clients a comprehensive lineup of services creating a one-stop solution for all communications services to small- and medium-sized businesses. For more information on GAN’s services or how to aid relief efforts, visit

About BTI Communications Group

BTI Communications Group Ltd., an exclusive business partner with Inter-Tel, Inc. (NASDAQ: INTL), offers a unique and comprehensive package of ProfitSolutions™ that integrates both phone and data needs and includes a strategic business plan to fit both the clients’ applications and financial needs.

As an Exclusive Business Partner, BTI is consistently named one of Inter-Tel’s Top 10 Dealers annually and was the 2003 recipient of Inter-Tel’s Exclusive Business Partner of the Year award. BTI’s ProfitSolutions™ process provides performance-enhancing applications, technically qualified personnel, support systems, continuing client education, unified billing structure, and a financial program that ensures long-term success measured in a daily return on investment. In addition to telephone equipment and systems, BTI provides local, long distance and Internet access through its sister company, GAN.

Eric Brackett founded BTI Communications Group, Ltd. in 1985 in Chicago, Ill. BTI opened its Los Angeles branch in December 2001 to serve its West Coast clients. BTI’s clients include The Options Clearing Corporation, Lawndale Christian Health Center and Anthony International. For more information on BTI’s services or how to aid relief efforts, visit

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Reno Provine
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