FCC Chairman Wheeler Announces Senior Staff Appointments
Federal Communications Commission
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FCC CHAIRMAN WHEELER ANNOUNCES SENIOR STAFF APPOINTMENTSWashington, D.C. – Today FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler announced the appointment of Tim Brennan as
Chief Economist for the agency, and Clete Johnson as Chief Counsel for Cybersecurity in the Public
Safety and Homeland Security Bureau.
“I am very pleased that Tim Brennan has agreed to join the Commission as our Chief Economist. His
long and distinguished consideration of regulation, competition, and monopoly issues will enable him to
contribute immediately and materially to our work,” FCC Chairman Wheeler said. “Clete Johnson’s
policy expertise and skills working with stakeholders in the public and private sectors will be a
tremendous asset as the Commission continues its efforts to promote network reliability and address
future security threats through multistakeholder processes. They both bring a wealth of knowledge and
experience to the Commission.”
Timothy Brennan, Chief Economist
and economics at the University of Maryland Baltimore County (UMBC) and a senior fellow with
Resources for the Future (RFF). Prof. Brennan’s research has addressed topics in antitrust, regulatory
economics, copyright, electricity markets, telecommunications and media policy, environmental
economics, and methods and ethics in public policy. His current research is focusing on energy
efficiency policies, the role of behavioral economics in cost-benefit analysis, and standards for legality
of exclusionary practices in antitrust law. He co-authored two books on electricity deregulation, A
Shock to the System (1996) and Alternating Currents: Electricity Markets and Public Policy (2002). He
is a co-editor of Economic Inquiry and sits on the editorial boards of the Journal of Regulatory
Economics, Information Economics and Policy, Communications Law and Policy, and the
International Review of the Economics of Business.
Before joining the UMBC faculty in 1990, Tim was an economist with the Antitrust Division of the U.S.
Department of Justice and taught in the telecommunications policy program at George Washington
University. From 1996-97, he was a senior economist for the White House Council of Economic
Advisers and in 2003-05 served as a staff consultant to the U.S. Federal Trade Commission. During
2006, he held the T. D. MacDonald Chair in Industrial Economics at the Canadian Competition Bureau.
He has advised on competition law internationally for authorities in countries including Australia, Costa
Rica, Mexico, Russia, the Slovak Republic, Sweden, and Uzbekistan. In 2013, he received the
Distinguished Service Award from the Public Utility Research Center at the University of Florida.
Tim received a B.A. in mathematics in 1973 from the University of Maryland, College Park, a M.A. in
mathematics in 1975 and a Ph.D. in economics in 1978 from the University of Wisconsin in Madison.
Clete Johnson, Chief Counsel for Cybersecurity
the Bureau Chief, Rear Admiral (Ret.) David Simpson, and help implement the Commission’s
cybersecurity mission. This includes working with stakeholders to identify and address communications
sector vulnerabilities, and increasing the security and resiliency of critical infrastructure within the
communications sector by facilitating the development and implementation of cybersecurity best
Mr. Johnson joins the FCC from the Senate Intelligence Committee where he worked on a number of
initiatives within the Committee’s cybersecurity portfolio and served as the Committee's lead staffer on
financial intelligence issues. As the Committee’s designated counsel for former Intelligence Committee
Chairman and present Commerce Committee Chairman Senator John D. Rockefeller IV, Mr. Johnson was
the staff lead for Senator Rockefeller’s cybersecurity legislation and related stakeholder outreach. He
served previously as Senator Rockefeller's counsel for defense, foreign policy, and international trade.
Before coming to the Senate, Mr. Johnson practiced law at Patton Boggs LLP, focusing on export
controls and defense procurement, as well as other aspects of international trade and security. He is a
former Army officer, serving first as a platoon leader and maintenance shop officer in South Korea, and
later as a General's aide in Germany. His time in Germany included service in NATO's Operation Allied
Force in Albania, Macedonia, and Kosovo.
Mr. Johnson received his J.D. from the University of Georgia School of Law, where he was Editor in
Chief of the Georgia Journal of International and Comparative Law. While on a Fulbright Fellowship, he
earned an M.Sc. in International Relations from the London School of Economics. He received his
bachelor's degree in History from Harvard University.
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