Updated: Jan 26
STATEMENT OF JESSICA ROSENWORCEL ON BEING DESIGNATED THE ACTING CHAIRWOMAN OF THE FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION BY PRESIDENT BIDEN
January 25, 2021
ACTING FCC CHAIRWOMAN ROSENWORCEL ANNOUNCES STAFF APPOINTMENTS AND SPECIAL DESIGNATIONS WASHINGTON, January 25, 2021: Today, Acting FCC Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel announced the following staff appointments and special designations to the Office of the Chairwoman. Chairwoman Rosenworcel said, “I have long said that the talent and dedication of FCC staff is unmatched. So, I am honored that this group of public servants have agreed to assist me in leading the Commission. We have a lot of work to do and I can’t wait to get started.”
Travis Litman, Acting Chief of Staff: Travis is an FCC veteran with over a decade’s experience at the agency. He served then-Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel’s office in different capacities including as Chief of Staff and Senior Legal Advisor. He also has held a variety of roles in the Federal Communications Commission’s Wireline Competition Bureau. In addition, he has served as Counsel on detail to the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, where he provided assistance to the Subcommittee on Communications, Technology, and the Internet. Before entering public service, Travis practiced communications law in Washington, DC. He is a graduate of Lewis & Clark College and the University of Colorado School of Law.
Kate Black, Acting Chief Policy Advisor: Kate has served as Chairwoman Rosenworcel’s Policy Advisor since 2017. She joined the office from EMILY's List, where she served as Chief of Staff. Previously, Kate served as the Vice President of Research for EMILY's List, where she was responsible for policies regarding key issues facing American families. While in this role, she also served as Executive Director of American Women. Kate has held a variety of other policy and research positions at a diverse group of organizations, including the Democratic National Committee, the Service Employees International Union, and Hillary Clinton for President. She is the co-author, with June Diane Raphael, of "Represent: The Woman's Guide to Running for Office and Changing the World," published by Workman Publishing in 2019. She is a graduate of Miami University and holds a Master of Arts from George Washington University.
Umair Javed, Acting Chief Counsel: Umair serves as Acting Chairwoman Rosenworcel's Chief Counsel. From October 2017 through January 2021, he served as then-Commissioner Rosenworcel's legal advisor for wireless and international issues. Umair joined the FCC from Wiley Rein LLP, where he was an attorney in the firm's Telecom, Media, and Technology practice group. Umair also has served on U.S. delegations to treaty-writing conferences and meetings of the International Telecommunication Union and as Commissioner of the Consumer Protection Commission of Fairfax County. He graduated from the University of Virginia and received his JD from the University of Virginia School of Law.
D’wana Terry, Acting Special Advisor to the Chairwoman and Acting Director of the Office of Workplace Diversity: D’wana will advise the Acting Chairwoman on work the agency can do to identify and redress inequities in its policies and programs while also continuing to serve as the Acting Director of the Office of Workplace Diversity. The Office of Workplace Diversity ensures that the provides employment opportunities for all persons regardless of race, color, sex, national origin, religion, age, disability, or sexual preference. D’wana has served in numerous senior positions at the FCC since joining the agency from private practice in 1994. Most recently, she was associate bureau chief of the Wireline Competition Bureau. She has also served as an associate bureau chief and chief of staff in both the Wireless Telecommunications Bureau and the Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau and as acting deputy bureau chief of CGB. In addition, she previously served as chief of the Wireless Bureau’s Public Safety & Critical Infrastructure Division. She graduated from Lafayette College and received her JD from the University of Virginia School of Law.
Sanford Williams, Acting Special Advisor to the Chairwoman and Director, Office of Business Communications Opportunities: Sanford will advise the Acting Chairwoman on work the agency can do to identify and expand opportunities for communities that have been historically underserved while also continuing to serve as Director of the Office of Communications Business Opportunities. The Office of Communications Business Opportunities promotes competition and innovation in telecommunications and information services and supports opportunities for small, women-owned, and minority-owned communications businesses. Sanford has worked in various roles at the FCC since 1999. He also worked as an attorney for Womble, Carlyle, Sandridge & Rice and taught at Augusta State University in Georgia. Mr. Williams graduated from Cornell University where he earned an undergraduate degree in operations research and industrial engineering and a Master’s in Business Administration from the Johnson School of Management. He earned his law degree from the University of Virginia School of Law where he was a member of the Virginia Law Review.
Trent Harkrader, Acting Special Advisor to the Chairwoman and Deputy Bureau Chief, Wireline Competition Bureau: Trent will advise the Acting Chairwoman on implementation of the recent Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021, including its initiatives on broadband adoption and telehealth, while also continuing to serve as Deputy Bureau Chief in the Wireline Competition Bureau. Trent has been responsible for numerous Commission broadband policy initiatives since 2011. He has led major reforms of all four of the Commission’s universal service programs, spearheaded the agency’s work on the national security supply chain proceeding and, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, ran the Commission-wide initiative to help fund health care providers offering essential telehealth services to patients. Before joining the Bureau, Trent was an attorney advisor and division manager in the Enforcement Bureau.
Holly Saurer, Acting Legal Advisor, Media: Holly joins the office from the Media Bureau, where she has held several positions, including Deputy Bureau Chief, Associate Bureau Chief, Senior Legal Advisor and Attorney-Advisor with the Media Bureau’s Policy Division. Holly has previously served as an Acting Media Advisor for Commissioners Rosenworcel and Clyburn, and an International and Consumer Affairs Legal Advisor for Chairman Wheeler. Prior to joining the Commission, Holly worked at the Washington, DC offices of Drinker Biddle & Reath and Miller & Van Eaton. Holly received her JD from American University and graduated from Syracuse University’s Newhouse School of Public Communication.
David Strickland, Acting Legal Advisor, Consumer, Enforcement, and International: David joins the office from the Enforcement Bureau, where he most recently served as Assistant Division Chief, managing consumer protection, privacy, and media enforcement matters. David also served as Assistant Division Chief in the International Bureau, where he worked on a variety of satellite, telecommunications policy, and spectrum-related issues. Before joining the FCC, he was an attorney in private practice, specializing in litigation and antitrust issues. David is a graduate of the University of Virginia and Harvard Law School. Ramesh Nagarajan, Acting Legal Advisor, Wireline: Ramesh joins the office from the Wireline Competition Bureau, where he was most recently Deputy Division Chief of the Competition Policy Division. He also served as a law clerk to United States District Judge James D. Whittemore in the Middle District of Florida. Ramesh began his legal career practicing antitrust and competition law at O'Melveny & Myers LLP. Before attending law school, he served as a Legislative Assistant to Representative Lois Capps. He is a graduate of Princeton University and Harvard Law School.
Ethan Lucarelli, Acting Legal Advisor, Wireless and Public Safety: Ethan joins the office from the Wireless Telecommunications Bureau, where he served as legal and policy advisor to the Bureau Chief. Previously, Ethan was Director of Regulatory & Public Policy at Inmarsat, a global satellite communications company, and an attorney in the Telecommunications, Media, and Technology group at law firm Wiley Rein LLP. Ethan also is a Professorial Lecturer in Law at the George Washington University Law School, teaching courses in Telecommunications Law and Scholarly Writing. Ethan earned his JD with highest honors from George Washington University Law School and a Bachelor of Science in Communications from the University of Illinois.
Aurelle Porter, Acting Staff Assistant: Aurelle has worked in then-Commissioner Rosenworcel’s office since 2018 and has been at the Federal Communications Commission since 2006. During her time at the agency, she has served as Special Assistant in the Office of Legislative Affairs and as a Staff Assistant to former FCC Chairman Kevin J. Martin. Andi Roane, Acting Confidential Assistant: Andi joins the office after serving in the offices of former Chairman Pai, former Chairman Wheeler, and Commissioner Simington. In prior FCC service, Andi served as the special assistant to the chief of the Wireless Telecommunications Bureau. Previously, she worked as an executive assistant for more than two decades in the private sector.
WASHINGTON, January 21, 2021
Today, President Joseph R. Biden designated FCC Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel as Acting Chairwoman of the Federal Communications Commission.
“I am honored to be designated as the Acting Chairwoman of the Federal Communications Commission by President Biden. I thank the President for the opportunity to lead an agency with such a vital mission and talented staff. It is a privilege to serve the American people and work on their behalf to expand the reach of communications opportunity in the digital age.”
In her time at the Commission, Rosenworcel has worked to promote greater opportunity, accessibility, and affordability in our communications services in order to ensure that all Americans get a fair shot at 21st century success. From fighting to protect net neutrality to ensuring access to the internet for students caught in the Homework Gap, she has been a consistent champion for connecting all. She is a leader in spectrum policy, developing new ways to support wireless services from Wi-Fi to video and the internet of things. Prior to joining the agency, she served as Senior Communications Counsel for the United States Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, under the leadership of Senator John D. Rockefeller IV and Senator Daniel Inouye. Before entering public service, Jessica practiced communications law in Washington, DC.