Ajit Pai Nominated to a Second Term as FCC Chairman
On March 7, President Trump announced his intent to nominate Ajit V. Pai for a second five-year term as Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). The five-year appointment would span from July 1, 2016, when Pai’s first term officially ended, to 2021. FCC commissioners are able to stay on at the agency for an additional year, but Pai would have to secure confirmation from the Senate to continue beyond that time. At present, two spots still remain left to be filled in order for the Commission to get it back to full capacity. Democratic Commissioner Mignon Clyburn and Republican Commissioner Michael O’Rielly are the other two current commissioners.
Mr. Pai was designated acting Chairman of the FCC by President Trump in January 2017. He had previously served as Commissioner at the FCC, appointed by then-President Barack Obama and confirmed unanimously by the Senate in May 2012. Before this, Mr. Pai was a Partner at Jenner & Block, LLP from 2011 until 2012, and Deputy General Counsel, Associate General Counsel, and Special Advisor to the General Counsel at the FCC from 2007 until 2011. In a statement released by the FCC, Pai affirmed his commitment to “work[ing] with [his] colleagues to connect all Americans with digital opportunity, foster innovation, protect consumers, promote public safety, and make the FCC more open and transparent to the American people.” In a separate statement, Chairman Pai also announced the appointment of two staff members to the Office of the Chairman—Nathan Leamer, who will serve as the Chairman’s Policy Advisor, and Carlos Minnix, who will serve as a Staff Assistant.
Chairman Pai’s FCC website bio can be accessed here.