FCC's Jessica Rosenworcel Salutes First Black FCC Chairs

Mignon Clyburn
(Image credit: N/A)

As Black History Month winds down, acting FCC chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel raised up three former chairs or acting chairs with Twitter shout-outs with an #FCCfirsts hashtag.

"The first African American @FCC Chairman was @WEKennard [William Kennard]," she tweeted. "He served from November 1997 to January 2001. During his tenure, he shaped policies that created an explosion of new wireless phones, brought the Internet to a majority of American households, & more. #BlackHistoryMonth."

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Next came a still-familiar familiar face in cable and broadband circles, Michael Powell, head of NCTA-the Internet & Television Association.

"The second Black @FCC Chairman was @chairmanpowell [Michael Powell], who served from January 22, 2001 until March 17, 2005. During his tenure he focused on consumer issues such as the right to keep your cellphone number when switching carriers and the Do-Not-Call list. #BlackHistoryMonth."

And finally.

"On August 3, 2009, @MignonClyburn became the first Black woman @FCC Commissioner until June 6, 2018," Rosenworcel tweeted. "She was the first Acting FCC Chairwoman from May 20, 2013 to November 4, 2013. She championed diversity in media ownership & Inmate Calling reform. #BlackHistoryMonth #FCCFirsts."

Also Read: Black Voices Rising

Rosenworcel would be a trailblazer herself as the first woman chair if she gets the "acting" removed from her title by President Joe Biden, as many Hill Democratic women have called on the President to do.

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.