ATC Communications (Albion Telephone Company Inc.) has been a family owned business since the company was pioneered in 1929 by Jeannette Breslin and her husband Mike. Mike and Jeannette purchased the telephone system soon after their arrival in Albion, Idaho. Initially the company
consisted of 18 magneto crank phones in the town of Albion, a few broken down pine poles and several hundred feet of iron wire. Some of the wire was strung on fence posts to save the expense of a telephone pole. Jeannette, Mike, her son Victor Redman and his wife Mildred initiated operations of the company. Jeannette was the backbone and Victor was the dreamer and expander. The company originally operated as a sideline and what little money was made went directly back into the business. During the years prior to dial service, Jeannette sat at a magneto switchboard 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. One of Victor's children would spell her during times of sickness or other times when she was unable to work. She operated the magneto switchboard and a next generation common battery board for over 35 years of her life and was referred to by members of the area as "Central". She was well known in the community for her kindness and caring nature and was loved by all who knew her. She also acted as the town's only nurse, providing medical aid to all who required it.
The company continued to grow and in 1954 expanded telephone lines to the outlying communities of Almo, Elba and Malta. After the death of both Jeannette and Victor in early 1963, and the subsequent death of Vic's wife Mildred in 1965, the operation was left in the hands of ODeen Redman, their son. The company continued to expand with the purchase of the Holbrook Exchange in 1967 and the addition of the Raft River Exchange in 1976. Telephone service has continued to grow and improve through the years.
Recent Growth In October of 1996, Albion Telephone Company formed a subsidiary company named Westel, Inc. which purchased the exchanges in Arco, Howe, Moore, Mackay and Malad from US West. The total company now serves nearly 4,000 subscribers in a 4000 square mile area in five counties and two states. In January of 2000, Albion Telephone Company and Westel merged and the company now operates as ATC Communications. ATC Communications continues to operate as a family business with ODeen serving as President and CEO, his wife Darla as Executive Secretary and their son Rich as Vice President. ODeen's brother Barry serves as Treasurer.
ATC Communications now provides DSL to over 99% of its customers and offers speeds of up to 20 Mbps. The company formed a new subsidiary named ATC Long Distance that now offers interstate and intrastate long distance along with toll-free numbers. In 2007, ATC formed a new cellular company, Syringa Wireless, with three other local exchange telephone companies. They now have three cellular storefronts located in Albion, Arco, and Malad.
In 2007, ATC purchased NextPhone, a hosted-PBX provider, in an effort to expand their market to other cities including Boise, Idaho Falls, and Pocatello.