Anna Gomez Is President Biden’s Nominee for Key FCC Seat

President Joe Biden has announced Anna Gomez, a veteran communications attorney, as his pick to fill the FCC commissioner post that has been vacant for more than two years. If the Senate confirms Gomez, Democrats will have a 3-2 majority at the agency, which has a Democratic chairwoman, Jessica Rosenworcel. This is not the first time Biden sought to fill the post. In October 2021 he nominated Gigi Sohn, co-founder of Public Knowledge and an architect of the FCC’s 2015 net neutrality rules, but the Senate refused to advance her to a vote and she withdrew from consideration in March.

CNBC notes that the Federal Communications Commission has been in a 2-2 deadlock for Biden’s entire presidency thus far, leaving “more contentious issues like net neutrality off the table, despite the administration’s hope to restore the rules that would prohibit Internet service providers from blocking or favoring certain content.”

Gomez joined the State Department this year as a senior adviser for international information and communications policy in the Bureau of Cyberspace and Digital Policy, according to a White House announcement.

She served as the National Telecommunications and Information Administration deputy administrator from 2009 to 2013, and also spent 12 years working at the FCC in posts that included deputy chief of the international bureau and senior legal advisor to former chairman William E. Kennard.

Prior to her current post, Gomez was a partner at Wiley LLP, focusing on telecommunications media and technology. Gomez also previously served as VP for federal and state government affairs at Sprint Nextel and an associate at Arnold & Porter. She earned her B.A. at Pennsylvania State University and her J.D. from George Washington University Law School.

National Hispanic Media Coalition president and CEO Brenda Victoria Castillo issued a statement that said the group was “unapologetic” in lobbying the Biden administration to appoint a Hispanic commissioner “as it has been over two decades since a Latino commissioner has represented our community via one of the agency’s five commissioner seats.”

Constituting nearly 20 percent of the U.S. population, “having a Latino voice on the Commission is crucial for the digital age,” Castillo said.

Consumer advocacy group Public Knowledge, while disappointed that Sohn didn’t get confirmed, “welcomed Biden’s new choice,” according to Ars Technica.

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