The FCC has opened up its window for nominations for membership on its Advisory Committee on Diversity and Digital Empowerment. A Chairperson is also sought for the forthcoming committee, which would see tenures of two years for members and become active this autumn.
The Commission asks that nominations for committee membership be submitted to the FCC no later than 11:59pm Eastern on June 28.
The committee’s mission will be to provide recommendations to the FCC on how to empower disadvantaged communities and accelerate the entry of small businesses, including those owned by women and minorities, into the media, digital news and information, and audio and video programming industries, including as owners, suppliers, and employees.
It will also provide recommendations to the Commission on how to ensure that disadvantaged communities are not denied the wide range of opportunities made possible by next-generation networks.
The committee is intended to provide an effective means for stakeholders with interests in these areas to exchange ideas and develop recommendations to the Commission on media ownership and procurement opportunities, empowering communities in order to spur educational, economic, and civic development, and consumer access to digital technologies.
The Committee’s work is intended to enhance the Commission’s ability to carry out its statutory responsibility to promote policies favoring diversity of media voices, localism, vigorous economic competition, technological advancement, and promotion of the public interest, convenience, and necessity.
The Committee will be organized under, and will operate in accordance with, the provisions of the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA). As authorized by FACA, the Committee may facilitate its work through informal subcommittees, or other subgroups of the Committee, which shall report their activities and recommendations to the Committee as a whole.
WHO MAY APPLY FOR MEMBERSHIP
The Commission seeks applications from representatives of various sectors of the communications industry, representatives of state and local regulators, and representatives of consumers and community organizations that wish to be considered for membership on the Committee. The Commission is particularly interested in receiving nominations and expressions of interest from individuals and organizations in the following categories:
• Organizations and other entities representing disadvantaged communities, such as racial, social, and economic disadvantage, as well as small businesses, including those owned by women and minorities;
• Federal, state, local, and Tribal government agencies;
• Broadcast stations, cable operators, satellite operators, other multichannel video programming distributors, content companies, online video distributors, broadband providers, public interest/consumer groups, academics, financial institutions including brokerage companies, venture capital, and private equity firms;
• Qualified representatives of other stakeholders and interested parties with relevant experience.
Members will be selected to balance the expertise and viewpoints that are necessary to address effectively the issues to be considered by the Committee.
Members are appointed as representatives of the communications industry, representatives of federal, state, local and Tribal regulators, or representatives of consumers and community organizations.
As appropriate, members may also be appointed for their individual expertise as “Special Government Employees.” Because Committee members seeking to serve in their individual capacities for their individual expertise may not be registered federal lobbyists, such nominees who are registered federal lobbyists will not be considered. Committee members will not be compensated for their service.
OBLIGATIONS OF MEMBERS AND COMMITTEE MEETINGS
Members will serve at the discretion of FCC Chairman Ajit Pai. Members should be willing and able to attend approximately 2 one-day plenary committee meetings per year during the committee’s term.
Members also will be encouraged to participate in deliberations of at least 1 subcommittee or other subgroup, if any are established. The time commitment for participation in any subcommittee or other subgroup may be substantial. However, subcommittee or other subgroup meetings may be conducted informally, using suitable technology to facilitate the meetings, subject to oversight by the Designated Federal Officer of the Committee.
Meetings of the full Committee shall be open to the public and timely notice of each meeting shall be published in the Federal Register, and shall be further publicized through other appropriate vehicles. All such meetings will be fully accessible to individuals with disabilities.
No specific nomination form is required; however, each nomination must include the following information:
• Name, title, and organization of the nominee and a description of the organization, sector or other interest the nominee will represent;
• Nominee’s mailing address, e-mail address, and telephone number;
• A statement summarizing the nominee’s qualifications and reasons why the nominee should be appointed to the Committee;
• A statement, if the nominee will represent a specific organization, describing the organization as well as the benefit of having the organization represented on the Committee; and
• A statement confirming that the nominee, if seeking appointment for the individual’s expertise and not as a representative of an organization or entity, is not a registered federal lobbyist;
• Individuals seeking nomination as the Committee’s Chairperson should indicate their interest in such position and describe their relevant qualifications or experience.
For applicants seeking to represent an organization or company, the applicant’s nomination to the Committee must be confirmed by a written statement of an authorized person (e.g., organization or company official) that such organization or company wants the nominated person to represent it on the Committee. For example, this confirmation may be in the following format: “I am [insert official’s name], the [insert official’s title] at the [insert name of organization – e.g., company, government entity, trade association, etc.], with responsibilities for [concise description of position]. My organization would like [insert proposed member’s name], who is currently [an employee of/consultant/attorney to the company] to serve as our representative on the Commission’s Advisory Committee on Diversity and Digital Empowerment.”
All nominations, including the requisite statements listed above, should be submitted by e-mail to [email protected].
For additional information about the Committee, please contact Jamila Bess Johnson, the Designated Federal Officer for the Advisory Committee on Diversity and Digital Empowerment, at 202-418-2608, or [email protected], or Brenda Villanueva, the Deputy Designated Federal Officer, at 202-418-7005 or [email protected]