Despite protests from nine Republican senators asking to be recorded as “no” votes, the nomination of Anna Gomez to fill the open seat on the FCC moves to the full Senate. This comes after the Senate Commerce Committee endorsed her nomination without a roll call. Committee chair Maria Cantwell (D-WA) remarks, “Ms. Gomez is a dedicated public servant with 25 years of experience in the telecommunications industry. If confirmed, she will be the first Latina on the Commission in more than 20 years. Ms. Gomez has demonstrated she has the experience and judgment to be highly effective in this role as commissioner and has earned bipartisan support for her nomination.” Gomez has been with the State Department since January as senior adviser for International Information and Communications Policy. She previously spent more than 13 years as a deputy assistant secretary at the US National Telecommunications and Information Administration. Meanwhile, the re-nominations of FCC commissioners (Democrat) Geoffrey Starks and (Republican) Brendan Carr for new terms were approved and sent to the full Senate for a final vote. Starks has been on the FCC since 2019; Carr since 2017. Ranking member Ted Cruz (R-TX) opposed the nominations of Gomez and Starks. He accused Gomez of not being sufficiently in support of free speech because she opposes disinformation. Cruz criticized Starks for opposing “key recommendations to reduce fraud in the Affordable Connectivity Program, apparently because he doesn’t want to bar illegal aliens from receiving taxpayer-funded subsidies.” If the full Senate votes to approve Gomez, the Commission will be at full strength for the first time under President Biden’s administration.
Las Vegas-based director of news content Rich Johnson departs USA Radio News. Johnson previously worked as an anchor/reporter for Fox Radio News; ABC News Radio; WTOP, Washington, and KIRO-FM, Seattle.
The Senate Commerce Committee will vote this Wednesday (7/12) at 10:00 am on the nomination of telecommunications attorney Anna Gomez as a new FCC commissioner, as well as re-nominations of Geoffrey Starks and Brendan Carr. Gomez is a senior advisor for international information and communications policy in the Bureau of Cyberspace & Digital Policy. She served for twelve years in various positions at the FCC, including deputy chief of the International Bureau and senior legal advisor to then-chair William E. Kennard. Before joining the Commission in 2015, Starks was senior counsel to the deputy attorney general at the Department of Justice. Meanwhile, Carr joined the agency as a staffer in 2012. He previously clerked for judge Dennis Shedd on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit and worked as a lawyer in the private sector.
Five-year-old, Iowa-based RoadWorthy Drive Productions has been renamed TechMobility Productions. According to company chief executive officer – and a founding member of the Black Automotive Media Group – Ken Chester, “We changed the name to better reflect the actual content of our weekly programming. Our previous branding was confusing to both the radio industry and our listeners.” TechMobility Productions produces/distributes “The TechMobility Show”; “The TechMobility Minute”; and “TechMobility In Focus.” More than 50 stations nationwide carry the company’s programming.
Former Missouri state representative Ted Farnen’s “Columbia Today” (4:00 pm – 6:00 pm) will debut next Monday (7/17) on Cumulus Media Columbia, MO news/talk KFRU. Cumulus Columbia vice president/market manager Greg Renoe remarks, “We are excited to have Ted join our KFRU line-up in the afternoons. He brings experience and a local perspective that we believe will resonate well with the listeners of KFRU.” Program director Luke Swezy notes, “[Ted] brings a valuable and informed perspective on local issues that will strengthen our programming; Farnen notes, “For nearly 100 years, KFRU has been Columbia’s best source for news and entertainment. This will be a fun and informative show with a heavy concentration on local issues and guests. It will be a program to which everyone will be welcome, and it will complement the outstanding local programming KFRU already provides.”