Another day, another dollar for a federal regulator joining the industry being regulated.
This time, it’s Federal Communications Commissioner Meredith Attwell Baker, who announced that she would leave on June 3.
Although Baker didn’t say where she’s headed, Comcast sent out a release saying she will become senior vice president of government affairs for NBCUniversal.
Baker joined the commission in 2009, after serving with the National Telecomunications and Information Administration during the George W. Bush White House.
Meredith Attwell Baker
News of her departure comes four months she voted to approve a merger between Comcast and NBC Universal. She later publicly called for changes in government oversight, saying the Comcast merger approval took too long.
At the time of the FCC approvial, she issued a joint statement with fellow commissioner Robert M. McDowell, calling for a narrowing of the federal review process.
“This transaction is only the most recent example of several problematic FCC merger proceedings that have set a trend toward more lengthy and highly regulatory review processes that may discourage future transactions and job-creating investment,” they wrote.
In words that must have been music to the owners of Comcast, they also commented about the growing online video market: “At a time of innovation and experimentation that is both dynamic and disruptive, the (approval) order fails to recognize that the contours of our collective video future are best shaped outside the Beltway.”
We’ve written before about the revolving door at the FCC.
Michael K. Powell, son of Colin Powell, was chairman of the commission from 2001 to 2005. He’s now president & CEO of the National Cable & Telecommunications Association. Charles Ferris, FCC chairman from 1977 to 1981, became a Cablevision lobbyist.
Other former FCC chairs include Dennis Patrick, who became CEO of Time Warner Telecommunications; and Richard E. Wiley, founder of the law firm Wiley Rein, which counts the National Association of Broadcasters and major broadcasting companies among its clients.