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Genachowski Sworn In

WASHINGTON: Newly sworn-in Federal Communications Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski announced members of his staff.

Edward P. Lazarus will serve as chief of staff. He comes to the FCC from Akin, Gump, Strauss, Hauer & Feld, where he was co-head of the firm’s global litigation practice and a member of the its management committee, overseeing more than 800 attorneys. He is a former prosecutor, having served as an assistant U.S. Attorney for the Central District of California, and started his legal career as a law clerk to Supreme Court Justice Harry A. Blackmun. Lazarus was also chairman of the board of AbilityFirst, a provider of housing and vocational services to people with disabilities, and the Children’s Law Center of Los Angeles, a nonprofit legal services organization that represents roughly 25,000 dependent kids in Southern California.

Colin Crowell will serve as senior counselor and strategic advisor to Genachowski. He’ll also “have particular responsibility for the communications, legislative, intergovernmental affairs, and public liaison functions of the agency,” the chairman’s announcement said. Crowell previously worked for more than 20 years on the staff of Rep. Ed Markey (D-Mass.), serving on the staff of the House of Representatives Subcommittee on Telecommunications and the Internet when Markey chaired the panel, and in the congressman’s personal office when Markey was the subcommittee ranking member.

Bruce Liang Gottlieb will be chief counsel and senior legal advisor. Gottlieb will manage the commission’s overall agenda and have responsibility for policy coordination with the bureaus. In addition, he will have particular responsibility for wireless, engineering and technology, and public safety issues. Gottlieb served as legal advisor to Commissioner Michael Copps from 2006 to 2009. Gottlieb also previously practiced communications law at Harris, Wiltshire and Grannis, and wrote for Slate. He began his legal career as a clerk to Judge David S. Tatel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit.

Priya Aiyar will serve as legal advisor, with particular responsibility for wireline competition and international issues. She was most recently a partner at Kellogg, Huber, Hansen, Todd, Evans and Figel, where she practiced in the areas of litigation and telecommunications. She began her legal career as a law clerk for Justice Stephen Breyer of the U.S. Supreme Court and Judge Merrick Garland of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit. Prior to entering law school, Aiyar was a Rhodes Scholar.

Sherrese Smith will serve as legal advisor, with particular responsibility for media, consumer and enforcement issues. She was most recently vice president and general counsel of Washington Post Digital. Prior to that, Smith was a member of the Intellectual Property group at Arnold and Porter. She currently serves on the board of the ABA’s Forum for Communications Law, has served on the board of the Media Law Resource Center Institute and was a co-chair of the Copyright Committee of the ABA. Smith is a frequent lecturer on media, publishing, internet and intellectual property issues and is a faculty member for the Practicing Law Institute.

Sherry Gelfand will serve as confidential assistant to the chairman. Gelfand served as executive assistant to the Assistant Attorney General of the Antitrust Division in the U.S. Department of Justice from 1993 and 1996. Since leaving the Department of Justice, she has served as manager for Business Intake for a major Tampa law firm and has served as executive assistant to the chairman and CEO of Valor Telecom in Dallas. Most recently, she served as executive assistant to the chairman and CEO of Soundpath Legal Conferencing in Washington, D.C.

Daniel Ornstein will serve as special assistant to the chairman. Ornstein comes to the FCC from CBS, where he managed several new media initiatives and helped run the network’s growing mobile business. Previously, Ornstein worked at Click.TV, which was acquired by Cisco Systems in 2007.

Mary Beth Richards will serve as special counsel to the chairman for FCC reform, and will head a comprehensive program to provide openness and transparency at the agency. Richards first joined the FCC in 1984 and held a variety of positions before moving to the Federal Trade Commission in November 2006 as deputy director of the Bureau of Consumer Protection. She recently returned to the Commission as deputy general counsel, and has been serving as acting managing director.

Ruth Milkman will lead the transition effort in the chairman’s office. Milkman served at the commission between 1986 and 1998 in a variety of positions. Shie was also a founding partner of Lawler, Metzger, Milkman & Keeney, LLC, and served as a law clerk to Judge J. Harvie Wilkinson of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.