Bruce E. Beard
Bruce Beard is the managing partner with the law firm of Cinnamon Mueller, and head of the firm’s St. Louis, Missouri office. He is an expert with thirty years of telecommunications law experience involving regulatory advocacy and compliance, transactional expertise, litigation and operational matters. His experience includes broadband, video, telephone, and wireless.
Mr. Beard’s practice focuses on representing cable, broadband, wireless and landline telecommunications companies on a wide variety of operational, compliance and transactional matters. He also assists the firm’s advocacy for the American Cable Association. Mr. Beard provides M&A assistance for buyers and sellers of cable systems. To date, he has assumed full deal responsibility and served as regulatory and consent/assignment counsel on over 75 transactions.
Mr. Beard also provides comprehensive FCC and contractual due diligence reviews associated with sales, financing and corporate compliance matters. He advises clients on retransmission consent contracts, programing agreements, compulsory copyright compliance, infrastructure agreements, pole attachment agreements, leases, sales agent agreements, non-compete agreements and other contractual matters. He provides representation at every stage of the customer relationship, ranging from service contracts and privacy matters to compliance with regulatory obligations. He also advises companies on the launch of VoIP services and compliance with voice related regulatory requirements. He also represents companies and individual land-owners in tower leases.
Mr. Beard’s practice includes representation before the FCC, the Illinois Commerce Commission, Missouri Public Service Commission, and other state agencies and local municipalities.
Mr. Beard has been with Cinnamon Mueller for over 10 years. Immediately prior to joining Cinnamon Mueller, he served as General Counsel to Millennium Digital Media (a/k/a Broadstripe), a cable triple-play provider. As General Counsel at Millennium, he oversaw the company’s launch of VoIP, the acquisition and sale of several systems, managed over 130 local franchise relationships and orchestrated the sale and liquidation of MDM iNet.
Prior to joining Millennium, Mr. Beard had a 12-year career with SBC Communications (n/k/a AT&T). He joined the Southwestern Bell Telephone Company (SWBT) legal department in 1988 supporting the Procurement and Marketing Departments, reviewing contracts and providing legal analysis to clients. Two years later, he was assigned to SWBT’s Federal Regulatory legal group where he handled regulatory accounting, the Cost Allocation Manual, structural separation and affiliate transaction issues. In 1994, he transferred to Southwestern Bell Mobile Systems to provide counsel on general operational matters, advertising and marketing reviews, tower leases, roaming agreements, litigation management and personnel issues. He was also responsible for wireless regulatory matters at the state and federal level, including advocacy related to the implementation of the 1996 Telecommunication Act.
Mr. Beard was General Counsel for the SBC Wireless Midwest operations following the Ameritech merger. He oversaw the integration of the Ameritech wireless operations and legal department with SBC’s Cellular One-Chicago operations and legal department.
Prior to joining SBC, Mr. Beard was an attorney with Thompson & Mitchell (n/k/a Thompson Colburn) from 1985-1988. He practiced in the litigation department handling business litigation, barge line and railroad personal injury defense, and appellate matters. He handled numerous appeals, including briefing and oral argument before the United States Court of Appeals, Eighth Circuit on an international contract dispute matter.
Mr. Beard also served as an Adjunct Professor at Webster University, teaching Telecommunications Law in the Telecommunication MBA program. He also served three terms as a teaching assistant for the Dale Carnegie Effective Communications and Human Relations Course.
Illinois Supreme Court, Law Clerk – Chief Justice Howard C. Ryan 1984-1985.
Southern Illinois University School of Law, Carbondale, IL JD, summa cum laude (1984)
Eastern Illinois University, Charleston, IL - BA, with honor, History Major with Political Science and Economics Minors (1981)
Honors and Awards
- 2018 Cablefax Top Lawyer Honoree
- American Cable Association Board of Directors 2001-2008
- SBC 1994 Best Regulatory Brief Award “Equal Access for Commercial Mobile Radio Service Providers”
- SBC 1995 Best Regulatory Brief Award “In the Matter of Interconnection and Resale Obligations Pertaining to Commercial Mobile Radio Services”
Mr. Beard is a regular speaker before industry groups and on webinars. He is a regular speaker at independent cable industry events including the National Cable Television Cooperative/ACA Independent Show, the NCTC Winter Educational Conference, the Montana Cable Telecommunications Association, and the Iowa Communications Alliance. Mr. Beard has provided guidance on the following topics: retransmission consent negotiations, closed captioning obligations, EAS responsibilities, CALM Act compliance, accessibility compliance, broadband stimulus opportunities, and general regulatory updates.
- Retransmission Consent 2017: Prepare Now, Come Out Ahead this Fall, Independent Cable News, April 2017, with Scott Friedman
- Cable and Telecom Deals-a Lawyers Perspective, Independent Cable News, July 2014, with Jake Baldwin.
- CALM Act- What You Need to Know, Independent Cable News, November 2012, with Jake Baldwin.
- The Heavy Hitting Cost of Unauthorized Pay-Per-View Broadcasts, Independent Cable News, April 2012, with Andrea Person.
- Implied Warranty of Habitability in the Sale of a New Home, Redarowicz v. Ohlendorf (1982), 92 Ill.2d 171, 1982 Southern Illinois University Law Journal 447.
- Missouri Bar Association
- Illinois Bar Association
- Bar Association of Metropolitan St. Louis;
- Alumni Board of Trustees-Eastern Illinois University Delta Chi Fraternity (2016-Present)
- Board of Directors-Chaminade College Preparatory School Club Lacrosse, Director and Past President (2006-2017)
- St Louis CYC Youth Basketball Coach (2002-2012)