FCC Finally Gets a Full House With McDowell Confirmation

Robert McDowell was confirmed as the fifth FCC commissioner by the Senate Friday before Memorial Day weekend, and sworn in by FCC Chairman Kevin Martin. His confirmation, hung up in the Senate for several weeks, now gives Martin his first Republican majority since he was appointed chairman more than a year ago.

"He has a wealth of knowledge and expertise in the communications arena, and we will rely on his insight," Martin said in a statement. "I am anxious to have him onboard and look forward to working with a full complement of commissioners to address the important issues before us."

Said McDowell: "There are many challenging issues facing the commission, and I am eager to begin working on them with my fellow commissioners, with Congress, and with the American people. I am confident that our efforts will help bring the most advanced and efficient communications systems in the world to all American consumers."

Before joining the FCC, McDowell was senior vice president and assistant general counsel for Comptel, a D.C. telecom lobby. McDowell attended Duke University, went to law school at the College of William and Mary and joined the Washington, D.C., office of Arter & Hadden, a law firm with headquarters in Cleveland. He also served as counsel on the Bush-Cheney Florida Recount Team in 2000. He resides on the Fairfax, Va., farm where he grew up, with his wife Jennifer and their two children.

McDowell's term runs until June 30, 2009.