Not that there was much doubt after yesterday, but President Obama has just officially nominated Tom Wheeler to be the next Chairman of the FCC. In a statement, outgoing Chairman Julius Genachowski says that he has known Wheeler personally and professionally for almost 20 years, and says that with his "deep policy expertise and his first-hand experience as a technology investor, he is a superb choice to advance the FCC's mission of promoting innovation, investment, competition, and consumer protection." Much of that experience comes from Wheeler's role as a venture capitalist and lobbyist, which has up until now included spots on the boards of companies like Roundbox, UpdateLogic, Twisted Pair Solutions, EarthLink and TNS -- plus previous tenures at both the NCTA and CTIA. He's also been publicly commenting on a range of issues on his Mobile Musings blog, which saw its last entry in December of last year. As expected, current FCC Commissioner Mignon Clyburn will serve as interim Chair pending Wheeler's confirmation.
STATEMENT FROM FCC CHAIRMAN JULIUS GENACHOWSKI
ON PRESIDENT OBAMA'S ANNOUNCEMENT OF NEW FCC LEADERSHIP
"Today President Obama announced his intent to nominate Tom Wheeler to serve as Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission and designate Commissioner Mignon Clyburn to serve as Acting Chairwoman upon my departure. These are excellent selections, and I commend the President. "I've had the pleasure of knowing Tom personally and professionally for almost 20 years. I was pleased to appoint Tom as Chairman of the FCC's Technological Advisory Council in 2010, and under his leadership the TAC has made strong contributions to the FCC's work, including on unleashing spectrum for mobile, removing barriers to private investment, and strengthening our cyber security. At this exciting time in this important sector, I can attest to Tom's commitment to harness the power of communications technology to improve people's lives, to drive our global competitiveness, and to advance the public interest. The FCC's role has never been more essential, and with Tom's deep policy expertise and his first-hand experience as a technology investor, he is a superb choice to advance the FCC's mission of promoting innovation, investment, competition, and consumer protection.
"Tom will be a great FCC Chairman, and I urge his swift confirmation.
"It has been a great honor and pleasure to serve with Commissioner Clyburn for the past four years. Mignon is a strong, experienced, and thoughtful leader. She has distinguished herself through her work to modernize universal service and promote competition, and as a champion for closing America's digital divide. With this appointment, Mignon will also distinguish herself as the first woman to lead the FCC. I congratulate my friend and colleague on this honor.
"With this nomination and appointment, when I depart in mid-May, I'll be leaving a revitalized FCC in great hands."