Federal Communications Commission chairman Kevin Martin will leave that job Tuesday and join a think tank’s communications program, the Aspen Institute announced January 15:
The Aspen Institute Communications and Society Program announced today that Kevin Martin, Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission from 2005 to January 20, 2009, will become a Senior Fellow to the Program beginning immediately upon his departure from the Commission. This will mark the fourth consecutive FCC Chairman to take this fellowship at the Aspen Institute upon leaving the Commission. The tradition, beginning with Democrats Reed Hundt (1993-97) and William Kennard (1997-2001), continued with Republican Michael Powell (2001-05) and now Martin.
“Chairman Martin has been a longtime participant in Aspen Institute forums,” said Charles Firestone, executive director of the Program. “We look forward to working with him and to the advice he will give us.” Firestone also noted the past participation of the anticipated next Chairman, Julius Genachowski, in the Aspen Institute Forum on Communications and Society (FOCAS), an annual summer conference in Aspen, pointing out the non-partisan nature of the Program.
“I have long enjoyed and respected the Communications and Society Program,” Martin said, “and will relish the opportunity to reflect on the nature of leadership that I exercised in this field for the past several years.”
The Communications and Society Program serves as a non-partisan venue for global leaders and experts to exchange insights on the societal impact of advances in digital technology and network communications. It also creates a multidisciplinary space in the communications policy-making world where veteran and emerging decision-makers can explore new concepts and develop new policy networks.
It’s been widely reported, including in The Washington Times, that President-elect Obama plans to appoint Julius Genachowski, a technology executive and investor — who was also a Harvard Law School classmate — as the next FCC chairman.