Michael K. Powell is the former chairman of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), nominated by President Bill Clinton and sworn in on November 3, 1997. He served as a member of the FCC for eight years during which time he was designated its chair by President George W. Bush in January 2001 and continued in that capacity until April 2005.
During his time as FCC chair, Chairman Powell oversaw the rapid transformation of communications markets into the Digital Age. During his tenure, the Internet came into widespread commercial use, as did smart phones, Wi-Fi networks and satellite radio.
In his current role as President & CEO of NCTA – The Internet & Television Association, Mr. Powell leads one of the largest trade associations in Washington, D.C., representing the communications and content industries. Prior public service includes Chief of Staff of the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice, Policy Advisor to the Secretary of Defense and service as an armored cavalry officer in U.S. Army. In the private sector he practiced law and was a senior advisor in a private equity firm. Chairman Powell also served on the boards of Cisco and AOL.
Chairman Powell serves on several nonprofit boards, including the Mayo Clinic, The William and Mary Foundation and America’s Promise Alliance. At America’s Promise, he co-chairs the Grad Nation project, an effort to address the high school dropout crisis.
Powell received his bachelor’s degree in government from the College of William and Mary and also holds an honorary doctorate from the College. He also served as Rector of the school’s Board of Visitors. He received his JD from Georgetown University Law Center.