Republican FCC Commissioner Meredith Attwell Baker is expected to announce she is leaving the FCC for a post at Comcast/NBCU, according to a source familiar with the planned move, which could be announced as early as today.
The NBC side has an opening with the departure of Bob Okun, longtime head of the Washington office, who is exiting later this summer, while on the Comcast side, Joe Waz, SVP, external affairs and public policy counsel, retired last month.
No Baker staffers were available for comment at press time, with all said to be in a meeting in the commissioner’s office. A Comcast spokesperson had not returned a call for comment at press time.
The news was first reported by the Wall Street Journal in a blog posting.
Just last month, Comcast hired a former FCC Commssioner, Rachelle Chong, to be its regional VP of government affairs for California.
Comcast/NBCU also tapped former National Cable & Telecommunications Association President Kyle McSlarrow to be president of NBCU Washington.
Baker joined the commission in July 2009.
She is the former acting head of the National Telecommunications & Information Administration.
Before joining the NTIA, Baker was vice president of Williams Mullen Strategies and, prior to that, director of congressional affairs at the Cellular Telecommunications Industry Association. Her resume also includes working in the legislative-affairs office at the State Department.
She is scheduled to go before a House Communications Subcommittee panel this Friday (May 13), along with the other commissioners, for a hearing on FCC process reform.
Baker’s departure would leave the commission with a 3 to 1 Democratic majority, though a 3-2 majority, although Democratic Commissioner Michael Copps has indicated he is leaving sometime this year. His current term is up in June, as was Baker’s, though she likely could secure a renomination, while Copps has signaled he was not looking to re-up.