Founder of Community Union, Inc. and a 35 yr. veteran in technology. Mr. Ortega has been an innovator in moving people to technology, and is recognized as one of the country’s foremost authorities on digital divide issues. Under his leadership Community Union (CU) has trained more than 35,000 parents and children living in the digital divide, and has been featured on TV where over 30 million viewers have seen the success others have achieved resulting from CU’s training courses. Larry says. “ensuring all families have high-speed fiber-optic access to on-line resources from the home, regardless of race or income level – improves quality of life for everyone.”  An educator at heart, Mr. Ortega is a published writer, having wrote many articles and published 100’s of videos, telling stories not commonly known or covered in main stream media. 

Larry was born in Los Angeles, one block from Tommy’s Burgers on 2nd Street, raised in Pomona, CA.  In 1993 he founded Community Union, Inc., and in 1994 conducted the first El Dia de Tecnologia (Technology Day).  In 2000, participated in roundtable discussion with then FCC Chairman Michael Powell, and then Congerssman Xavier Bacerra.  Larry has led formidable technology conferences that brought corporate, nonprofit, education, elected and appointed leaders together from the Silicon Valley, the San Joaquin Valley, Los Angeles and the Inland Empire – to highlight and share best training  practices for those living in the digital divide.  Ortega’s current project is FIber-Up My Neighborhood, where he is helping community wrestle back safety and financial protocols in the deployment of a world class telecommunication infrastructure.

BEST CRYSTAL BALL-LIKE MOMENT: In 2012, Mr. Ortega wrote about a telecommunication bill sponsored by then State Senator Alex Padilla that would effectively deregulate the industry, financially incentivize digital red-lining, and essentially put the entire expense burden of building a wireless network on the backs of wireline (landline) customers without their knowledge or approval. That is, making landline customers pay 541% more money for exact same landline service they were paying only $12/mo. ten years earlier.  State Senator Padilla rammed this bill through and onto the Governor’s desk who made it law.  Covid forcing distance learning pulled back the curtain and revealed millions of children who could not connect to the Internet to attend school; not just losing billions of dollars, but impacting children unlike anything in our generation. Mr. Ortega wrote in 2012 that deregulation has a 100% probability of failing, and did it ever.

BEST MOMENT CYCLING: Mr. Ortega is an avid cyclist having rode the coast of California from Tia Juana, Baja California to Trinidad CA just north of Eureka. With just 80 miles remaining to complete the entire coast of California, Mr. Ortega’s next ride will take him a few hundred miles into Oregon. Larry said, “Going on 70 miles plus rides along the coast of California is an amazing adrenaline rush for me. By far the biggest rush came from my ride this year (2021) over the three bridges in Eureka, known as the Samoa bridge. Riding over the Samoa bridge you are – what seems like – hundreds of feet above the water to your right, and 12 inches away from cars zooming past you at 55 mph on your left.”

BEST SPRITUAL MOMENT: Everyday of my life when I am touched by the spirit of God’s love: whether it be in my giving; or in receiving – at that moment where I found myself, I thought, alone in a battle – the draw bridge is lowered and the invitation extended to enter the castle of peace, vanquishing all worries and exemplifying the miracle.

For Mr. Ortega the key to life is love of God, self and neighbor. He is blessed to be a perpetual learner, a collector of happy moments…throughout his day, everyday.


L.A. Ortega