Long-time Federal Communications Commissioner Jonathan Adelstein likely will be leaving his FCC post to take charge of the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Rural Utilities Service, following reports that President Obama intends to nominate Adelstein for that job. The position would give Adelstein direct responsibility for overseeing the $2.5 billion in broadband stimulus grants that the RUS has been charged with distributing.
Seeing Adelstein's familiar face at the RUS program no doubt will be comforting to many of the independent telcos applying for grants, as Adelstein has been their champion at the FCC. Who replaces Adelstein will be equaling concerning to them, and an early report from Broadcasting & Cable suggests the new FCC commissioner could be Mignon Clyburn, a South Carolina public service commissioner and the daughter of Congressman James Clyburn (D-S.C.).
Julius Genachowski is President Obama's nominee as FCC Chairman, and it is possible he may be submitted for Congressional approval along with the nominations for Adelstein's post and that of the FCC spot vacated by Deborah Taylor Tate, a Republican from Tennessee.
- Broadcasting & Cable has this report
Adelstein has been rumored to be moving to an Obama administration job
Michael Copps took over as Acting FCC Chairman in January