Former FCC Commissioner Joins AEC Group

Sep 17, 2015, 15:14 ET from Arctic Economic Council

ANCHORAGE, Alaska, Sept. 17, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Speaking to a breakfast crowd for the Resource Development Council, Arctic Economic Council (AEC) Chairwoman Tara Sweeney announced that former FCC commissioner, Robert McDowell, will lead the newly established AEC Telecommunications working group.

"Aligned with the priorities of the AEC, I am proud to announce that Robert McDowell will serve as the chair of the AEC Telecommunications working group," said Sweeney. "I welcome Robert into the AEC family. His strong background in global telecommunications will drive results for increased broadband capacity in the Arctic."

The Telecommunications working group will consist of members from the Arctic Economic Council with input from telecommunications expert advisors. A final work product to include analysis and recommendations is expected in the first quarter of 2017.

"I'm excited to join the AEC team," said McDowell in a statement. "There are significant challenges to providing reliable and affordable telecommunications in the global Arctic, but now is the time to find solutions. I look forward to exploring additional opportunities in the far north, to include expanded broadband service."

McDowell has strong telecommunications experience, serving for seven years as commissioner of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in Washington, D.C. Appointed in 2006 and 2009 by presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama, McDowell was unanimously confirmed by the U.S. Senate at each appointment. As commissioner, he worked to formulate and establish U.S. communications policy – covering the media, Internet and wireless industries. He also served on official U.S. diplomatic delegations to advocate U.S. international policy positions before foreign governments, worked with government and industry leaders across the globe on telecommunications policy and negotiated as well as successfully secured the first U.S. federal entitlement reform in a generation, through the 2011 FCC overhaul of the Commission's $8 billion per year Universal Service subsidy program.

In addition to his work at the FCC, McDowell has served as a strategic advisor to global telecommunications interests – working on U.S. and international spectrum policy development, market trends, regulatory environments, Internet governance and competition law and policy.


Parties interested in participating in the AEC Telecommunications working group must submit a letter of interest and CV or resume to  no later than October 30, 2015. 


Established by the Arctic Council under the chairmanship of Canada, the AEC is an independent business forum established to facilitate Arctic business-to-business activities, promote responsible economic development and provide a circumpolar business perspective to the work of the Arctic Council. The inaugural meeting was held in September 2014 in Iqaluit, Nunavut Canada. The AEC has a 42-member board from eight Arctic states and six permanent participant organizations. Finland will assume the chairmanship from the U.S. in 2017.

Bianca Johansen


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SOURCE Arctic Economic Council