Julius Genachowski has announced plans to step down as Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission. An announcement on the FCC website said he would be leaving the position in the coming weeks despite the fact that his term was set to expire this July. Rumors have been circulating all week that such an announcement was imminent.
Genachowski became Chairman on June 29, 2009 after being nominated by President Barack Obama and confirmed by the Senate. He led an initiative to create the Connect America Fund and the Mobility Fund in an effort to connect all Americans to broadband.
During his announcement to FCC staff this morning, Genachowski said over the past four years they have focused the FCC on broadband, wired and wireless, working to drive economic growth and improve the lives of all Americans. He said there are still challenges ahead but a revitalized FCC is prepared to continue taking them on. Genachowski thanked Obama for his vision, friendship and the opportunity to serve his country.
The executive has a long history in Washington as he worked for former representative Charles Schumer in the 1980s and served as staff for the committee that investigated the Iran-Contra affair. Genachowski worked as a clerk for Supreme Court Justices David Souter and Justice William Brennan following a stint in law school. He then worked for the FCC from 1994 through 1997 before leaving to take another job.
It's unclear who will replace Genachowski moving forward nor do we have any sort of timeline for his replacement.