Dr. Rikin Thakker

By ga@beekeepergroup.com

Dr. Rikin Thakker is the Chief Technology Officer (CTO) for the Wireless Infrastructure Association (WIA). He leads activities related to emerging technologies and advises WIA members on 5G strategies, including densification, spectrum allocation, and broadband deployment. He analyzes impacts of current and future use-cases of 5G and provides recommendations on broadband infrastructure deployment strategies in addition to helping WIA members and their CTO offices identify future technology trends and shape their product, services, and real estate portfolios to make them ready for 5G and beyond.

Dr. Thakker possesses more than 20 years of experience in the field of cellular and wireless communications. He has helped design, deploy, and maintain cell sites, from 2G to 5G, for major cellular operators in the United States.

Dr. Thakker was appointed by Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel to serve on the FCC’s Technological Advisory Council (TAC), where he works alongside other leading technology experts to aid the Commission in identifying areas of innovation and developing new technology policy. He is also currently serving on the Commerce Spectrum Management Advisory Committee (CSMAC) at NTIA. Previously, he served on the FCC’s Broadband Deployment Advisory Committee (BDAC) and co-chaired the Job Skills and Training Opportunity working group, where he helped create recommendations on how industry and government could effectively implement strategies to address the growing demand for a skilled 5G and broadband workforce.

Teaching is one of his passions; Dr. Thakker is an adjunct faculty for the Masters in Telecommunication Teaching is one of his passions; Dr. Thakker is an adjunct faculty for the Master’s in Telecommunications program at the University of Maryland since 2009 and has designed courses on 5G and cellular infrastructure. He received Best Instructor of the Year Award in 2018 and 2014. At WIA, Dr. Thakker has played a vital role in the planning and execution of the Telecommunications Education Center (TEC) since its inception.

Dr. Thakker earned his Ph.D. in Systems Engineering with a concentration in Mobile Communications and Spectrum Management from George Washington University, his M.S. in Telecommunications from the University of Maryland, and his B.E. in Electronics and Communications from Gujarat University, India.

A strong supporter of STEAM-based education, Dr. Thakker volunteers for the FIRST LEGO League and coaches his kids’ robotics and math-club teams.