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FCC chairman to address NAB convention at Tuesday session

The speech on Tuesday, April 13, by FCC chairman Julius Genachowski is certain to be a hot ticket at NAB since its comes at a critical time for broadcasters considering the implications of the National Broadband Plan.

On March 17, the FCC presented to Congress the broadband plan, which calls for recouping 120MHz of spectrum from TV broadcasters for future wireless Internet broadband service. Genachowski is expected to talk about this to his broadcast audience at NAB.

The plan offers a variety of methods to achieve the government's goal, including repacking the DTV spectrum, changing technical rules related to channel spacing, spectrum sharing among two or more competing broadcasters, secondary license auctioning and other measures that have a direct impact on the over-the-air component of the TV service broadcasters offer the public.

Broadcasters currently face other critical issues at the commission, including the quadrennial review of media ownership rules and inquiries, and public forums addressing how broadcasters are fulfilling their localism obligation.

Prior to his appointment as FCC chairman in June 2009, Genachowski spent 10 years working in the technology industry, where his duties included starting, accelerating and investing in technology companies.

He co-founded LaunchBox Digital and Rock Creek Ventures, where he served as managing director, and he was a special advisor at General Atlantic. From 1997-2005, Genachowski was a senior executive at IAC/InterActiveCorp, a Fortune 500 company, where his positions included chief of business operations and general counsel.

Previously, Genachowski served as chief counsel to former FCC chairman Reed Hundt and as special counsel to then-FCC general counsel William Kennard, who was later named FCC chairman.