It's Official: Julius Genachowski Sworn In As FCC Chairman
On the afternoon of Monday, June 29, US Supreme Court Justice David Souter -- in one his last official duties on the high court -- swore in Julius Genachowski as the new Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission. Genachowski, who clerked for Souter after finishing law school, will complete the four years remaining in the term of outgoing FCC Commissioner Jonathan Adelstein. Both Genachowski and current FCC Commissioner Robert McDowell -- Genachowski for his initial term and McDowell for his first full term -- were confirmed by the US Senate on June 25.
Adelstein has been nominated by President Obama to be the Administrator for the US Department of Agriculture's Rural Utilities Service (RUS); a nomination hearing before the Senate's Agriculture Committee is scheduled for July 7.
Genachowski praised Adelstein's record, thanking him for his more than six years of "outstanding public service" as an FCC Commissioner. "Throughout his tenure at the Commission," Genachowski said, "he has tirelessly championed the public interest. The FCC and the public have benefited greatly from his rich understanding of media and technology policy, and his devotion to the democratic process. While I regret that I won't have the pleasure of serving with Jonathan at the FCC, I look forward to forging a strong partnership with him in his future work."
Commissioner Michael Copps, who had served as Acting Chairman since the resignation of then-Chairman Kevin Martin this past January, welcomed Genachowski to the Commission, saying Genachowski begins "what promises to be a public-spirited and distinguished tenure as Chairman. He knows the FCC well, brings impressive private sector and technology experience with him, and enjoys deserved renown for innovative thinking and new approaches. I look forward to working with him on the many issues awaiting his attention."
Copps also expressed his thanks for Adelstein's tenure on the Commission: "Jonathan and I have worked closely together on so many issues that it makes it hard for me to imagine a Commission without him. Our thoughts most often run in the same direction, whether the issue is media, broadband, rural America, the disabilities communities, reaching out to non-traditional stakeholders or upholding a shared vision of the public interest. His intelligence, good judgment, wide experience and invariably good humor combined to make him a highly productive Commissioner across a wide gamut of issues. I will miss him here but wish him all good things as he moves ahead in the confirmation process toward becoming Administrator of the Rural Utilities Service at the US Department of Agriculture. I look forward to our continuing work together and to our friendship through the years."
There has been no word as to when Commissioner McDowell will be sworn in for his new term.