CCIA Praises Choice of Genachowski as New FCC Chairman

BY CCIA Staff
January 13, 2009

The following statement is in response to news reports that President-elect Obama is naming Julius Genachowski to the post of FCC chairman. It can be attributed to Ed Black, the President and CEO of the Computer & Communications Industry Association:

“CCIA applauds the naming of Julius Genachowski as chairman of the Federal Communications Commission. Mr. Genachowski’s multifaceted background as FCC policy advisor, senior business executive, Supreme Court clerk, and Silicon Valley venture capitalist affords him a panoramic view of the modern communications landscape shared by few. The challenges and opportunities confronting the next chairman are neither partisan nor ideological, but it will take the policy, political and business acumen he has acquired in his many roles to strike the right balance between regulation and free-market deference. He will need to successfully utilize the FCC powers to guide policy for the communications industry and related sectors. The high quality of the other mentioned candidates for the position serves as evidence of both the importance of the appointment and of his outstanding qualifications.”

“The new chairman is positioned to be a leader in raising the importance of technology policy within the inner circles of the administration at a time when the economic well being of our country demands it. Genachowski’s role as a trusted confidant and personal friend to the president-elect portends favorably for the high-tech and communications industries and consumers. At the same time, Genachowski’s experience as advisor and counsel to two former FCC chairmen has likely imbued in him a respect for the requisite independence of the position when appropriate.”

“Having a strong commitment to the principles of Internet openness is critical to the many issues often debated separately in Washington. Genachowski has shown this commitment while serving as an advisor to Obama. We trust those who worked on Obama’s campaign know how critical the Internet is as a form of political communication not just to get elected, but to create a new relationship between government and citizens. For that dialogue to continue and to change the politics of Washington, that openness must be protected.”

“Much like the president-elect himself, the next FCC chairman will be forced to hit the ground running from day one. The importance of Genachowski’s position should not be overlooked. The next chairman is poised to confront major policy issues that will impact the future of the Internet and our digital economy. Decisions now on issues such as network neutrality and wireless spectrum reform will be especially important because they will be incorporated into the very fabric of the Internet and telecommunications going forward. As demonstrated by his work on the Obama campaign’s policy positions, he is sensitive to the legitimate concerns of the many stakeholders, including government, industry, and consumers. We are very confident that Julius Genachowski ‘gets it!’.”

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