Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel: click for press photo

Federal Communications Commission Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel believes that the future belongs to the connected. She works to promote greater opportunity, accessibility, and affordability in our communications services in order to ensure that all Americans get a fair shot at 21st century success. She believes strong communications markets can foster economic growth and security, enhance digital age opportunity, and enrich our civic life.

From fighting to protect net neutrality to ensuring access to the internet for students caught in the Homework Gap, Jessica has been a consistent champion for connecting all. She is a leader in spectrum policy, developing new ways to support wireless services from Wi-Fi to video and the internet of things. She also is responsible for developing policies to help expand the reach of broadband to schools, libraries, hospitals, and households across the country.

Named as one of POLITICO's 50 Politicos to Watch and profiled by InStyle Magazine in a series celebrating "women who show up, speak up and get things done," Jessica brings over two decades of communications policy experience and public service to the FCC. Prior to joining the agency, she served as Senior Communications Counsel for the United States Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, under the leadership of Senator John D. Rockefeller IV and Senator Daniel Inouye. Before entering public service, Jessica practiced communications law in Washington, DC.

She is a native of Hartford, Connecticut. She is a graduate of Wesleyan University and New York University School of Law. She lives in Washington, DC with her husband and two children.


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Narda Jones

Chief of Staff

Narda serves as FCC Chief of Staff having joined the Chairwoman’s leadership team from the White House where she was the Director of Legislative Affairs for the Office of Science and Technology Policy. Prior to that, she was the Senior Technology Policy Advisor for the Democratic staff of the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Transportation and Science. Narda started working in the U.S. Senate for Senator Maria Cantwell of Washington in 2014, after spending over a decade in senior roles in the Federal Communications Commission’s Wireline and International Bureaus. She also previously worked at the Minnesota Attorney General’s Office and the Minneapolis City Attorney’s Office. In addition, she was part of the inaugural class of the AmeriCorps Legal Fellowship program and spent her fellowship time aiding homeless families secure housing and public benefits in St. Paul, Minnesota. Born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, Jones is a graduate of Wesleyan University and Brooklyn Law School.

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Deena Shetler

Deputy Chief of Staff for Administration

Deena serves as Deputy Chief of Staff for Administration. She previously served as Deputy Chief of the Office of Economics and Analytics, Deputy Managing Director, several leadership roles in the Wireline Competition Bureau, and as a Legal Advisor to Commissioner Gloria Tristani. Deena served on details to the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) from 2010 to 2011 and to the Department of Justice Antitrust Division from 2016-2017. Deena joined the Commission in 1996 as an attorney in the Common Carrier Bureau. Prior to joining the FCC, she was an associate at Howrey and Simon in Washington D.C. and Los Angeles. Deena received her J.D., Order of the Coif, from University of California Los Angeles School of Law, and her B.A. from University of California San Diego.

Umair Javed

Umair Javed

Chief Counsel

Umair serves as Chairwoman Rosenworcel's Chief Counsel. From October 2017 through January 2021, he served as then-Commissioner Rosenworcel's legal advisor for wireless and international issues. Umair joined the FCC from Wiley Rein LLP, where he was an attorney in the firm's Telecom, Media, and Technology practice group. Umair also has served on U.S. delegations to treaty-writing conferences and meetings of the International Telecommunication Union and as Commissioner of the Consumer Protection Commission of Fairfax County. He graduated from the University of Virginia and received his JD from the University of Virginia School of Law.

Priscilla Delgado Argeris

Priscilla Delgado Argeris

Chief Legal Advisor

Priscilla serves as Chairwoman Rosenworcel’s Chief Legal Advisor. She joined the Chairwoman’s office from Meta Platforms, Inc. where she has focused on spectrum policy issues for the company across the globe. From 2012-2015, she previously served as then-Commissioner Rosenworcel’s Legal Advisor and Senior Legal Advisor covering wireline and wireless issues for the office during her tenure. Prior to joining the FCC, Priscilla worked at the law firm Wiley Rein, where she focused regulatory and litigation matters involving federal and state communications law. She received her undergraduate degree from Princeton University and her law degree from New York University School of Law.

D’wana Terry

D’wana Terry

Special Advisor to the Chairwoman and Acting Director of the Office of Workplace Diversity

D’wana advises the Chairwoman on work the agency can do to identify and redress inequities in its policies and programs while also continuing to serve as the Acting Director of the Office of Workplace Diversity. The Office of Workplace Diversity ensures that the provides employment opportunities for all persons regardless of race, color, sex, national origin, religion, age, disability, or sexual preference. D’wana has served in numerous senior positions at the FCC since joining the agency from private practice in 1994. Most recently, she was associate bureau chief of the Wireline Competition Bureau. She has also served as an associate bureau chief and chief of staff in both the Wireless Telecommunications Bureau and the Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau and as acting deputy bureau chief of CGB. In addition, she previously served as chief of the Wireless Bureau’s Public Safety & Critical Infrastructure Division. She graduated from Lafayette College and received her JD from the University of Virginia School of Law.

Sanford Williams

Sanford Williams

Special Advisor to the Chairwoman

Sanford advises the Chairwoman on work the agency can do to identify and expand opportunities for communities that have been historically underserved. Sanford has worked in various roles at the FCC since 1999. He also worked as an attorney for Womble, Carlyle, Sandridge & Rice and taught at Augusta State University in Georgia. Mr. Williams graduated from Cornell University where he earned an undergraduate degree in operations research and industrial engineering and a Master’s in Business Administration from the Johnson School of Management. He earned his law degree from the University of Virginia School of Law where he was a member of the Virginia Law Review.

Holly Saurer

Holly Saurer

Chief of the Media Bureau, Legal Advisor to the Chairwoman

Holly joins the office from the Media Bureau, where she has held several positions, including Deputy Bureau Chief, Associate Bureau Chief, Senior Legal Advisor and Attorney-Advisor with the Media Bureau’s Policy Division. Holly has previously served as an Acting Media Advisor for Commissioners Rosenworcel and Clyburn, and an International and Consumer Affairs Legal Advisor for Chairman Wheeler. Prior to joining the Commission, Holly worked at the Washington, DC offices of Drinker Biddle & Reath and Miller & Van Eaton. Holly received her JD from American University and graduated from Syracuse University’s Newhouse School of Public Communication.

Ethan Lucarelli

Ethan Lucarelli

Legal Advisor, Wireless and International

Ethan joins the office from the Wireless Telecommunications Bureau, where he served as legal and policy advisor to the Bureau Chief. Previously, Ethan was Director of Regulatory & Public Policy at Inmarsat, a global satellite communications company, and an attorney in the Telecommunications, Media, and Technology group at law firm Wiley Rein LLP. Ethan also is a Professorial Lecturer in Law at the George Washington University Law School, teaching courses in Telecommunications Law and Scholarly Writing. Ethan earned his JD with highest honors from George Washington University Law School and a Bachelor of Science in Communications from the University of Illinois.

Ramesh Nagarajan

Ramesh Nagarajan

Legal Advisor, Wireline and Enforcement

Ramesh joins the office from the Wireline Competition Bureau, where he was most recently Deputy Division Chief of the Competition Policy Division. He also served as a law clerk to United States District Judge James D. Whittemore in the Middle District of Florida. Ramesh began his legal career practicing antitrust and competition law at O'Melveny & Myers LLP. Before attending law school, he served as a Legislative Assistant to Representative Lois Capps. He is a graduate of Princeton University and Harvard Law School.

Carmen Scurato

Carmen Scurato

Legal Advisor, Consumer and Public Safety

Carmen Scurato joins the Chairwoman’s office from Free Press where she served as Associate Legal Director and Senior Counsel covering telecommunications, privacy, and technology issues. Previously, she was the Vice President of Policy and General Counsel for the National Hispanic Media Coalition, where she led a policy team focused on advancing the communication needs of the Latinx community. She has served on the FCC’s Consumer Advisory Committee, the American Library Association’s Public Policy Council, and participated in the Aspen Institute Conference on Communications Policy. Earlier in her career, Mrs. Scurato worked with the Department of Justice in both the Civil Frauds section, specializing in False Claims Act investigations, and in the Office of Legislative Affairs. A native of Puerto Rico, Mrs. Scurato received her undergraduate degree from New York University and her law degree from Villanova University.

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David Strickland

Legal Advisor, Media

David joins the office from the Enforcement Bureau, where he most recently served as Assistant Bureau Chief, managing consumer protection, privacy, and media enforcement matters. David also served as Assistant Division Chief in the International Bureau, where he worked on a variety of satellite, telecommunications policy, and spectrum-related issues. Before joining the FCC, he was an attorney in private practice, specializing in litigation and antitrust issues. David is a graduate of the University of Virginia and Harvard Law School.

Andi Roane-Wiley

Andi Roane

Confidential Assistant

Andi joins the office after serving in the offices of former Chairman Pai, former Chairman Wheeler, and Commissioner Simington. In prior FCC service, Andi served as the special assistant to the chief of the Wireless Telecommunications Bureau. Previously, she worked as an executive assistant for more than two decades in the private sector.

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Aurelle Porter

Executive Assistant

Aurelle has worked in then-Commissioner Rosenworcel’s office since 2018 and has been at the Federal Communications Commission since 2006. During her time at the agency, she has served as Special Assistant in the Office of Legislative Affairs and as a Staff Assistant to former FCC Chairman Kevin J. Martin.

Ovonda Walker

Ovonda Walker

Executive Assistant

Ovonda has over 16 years of federal government service. Most recently, she was a Staff Assistant in Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau as well as, Commissioner Michael O’Rielly’s office at the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). Prior to joining the O’Rielly office, Ovonda’s federal service includes: Executive Secretary to the Deputy Inspector General for Policy and Oversight at the Department of Defense; Secretary in the Civil Rights Division at the Department of Justice; Clerk Typist/Secretary at NASA Headquarters; and Clerk Typist at the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Services. She has also worked as a federal government contractor at the FCC in the Office of Chairman Tom Wheeler; at the Federal Aviation Administration; and at the Department of Defense/Defense Information Systems Network.

March 23, 2023

The National Broadband Map – Getting Better All the Time

Jessica Rosenworcel | Chairwoman

This past November, the FCC released new broadband maps that provide a snapshot of the state of broadband deployment in the United States. This is part of our evolving effort under the Broadband DATA Act to give us an accurate picture of where broadband is and is not across the country. Back in November, I noted that these maps represented more of a beginning than an end for the new era of broadband mapping. In that spirit, it is important to note that we’ve come a long way in the short time since that November release. Here are some key developments and things we’ve learned over the past four months.

Our new systems are up and running and working—especially the challenge process.

One of the big innovations of our new maps, compared to the old maps, is that they were designed to be constantly and consistently refined through an iterative process. This required us to build systems that allow for the steady collection—and integration—of new data. The centerpiece of this effort was setting up a robust challenge process where consumers and key stakeholders like state, local and Tribal governments could review our maps and let us know if our data matched their reality on the ground. Over the past four months, consumer and stakeholder engagement has been growing, and this feedback has been integrated into our datasets. For evidence of how this working, just look at the numbers.

Our maps are built on top of two datasets: a locations dataset, what we call the Fabric, that tells us where fixed broadband could be installed, and an availability dataset that shows what broadband services, if any, are actually available at the Fabric locations.

On the availability side, the FCC’s mapping team has a system in place to collect these challenges and report them to the relevant internet providers who supplied the availability data. Providers then have 60 days to concede or dispute the challenge. To date, stakeholders—primarily state governments—have stepped up to provide more than 600 bulk challenges covering provider reported availability at several million locations.

In the past four months, our mapping team has processed challenges to availability data for over 4 million locations. In other words, on average, we are addressing availability challenges to tens of thousands of locations every single day. Every two weeks, our public map is updated to reflect all availability challenges that have been resolved. In other words, the system is working.

Our next maps will be noticeably better—thanks in large part to even better location data.

The fact that we now have a working challenge process to hold internet providers accountable for their availability data is a sea-change improvement from the FCC’s old broadband maps. Remember, the FCC’s old maps had zero systems for public feedback. The agency simply reported what the carriers said on a census block basis. But an even bigger improvement is that our maps now reflect broadband availability at the physical location level. You can’t offer location-level data without an accurate accounting of locations where fixed broadband could even be installed. That brings me to the evolution of our locations dataset—the aforementioned Fabric. This Fabric was developed based on more than 200 public and commercial data sources ranging from public records to tax assessments to satellite imaging.

Our first version of the Fabric identified over 113 million locations where fixed broadband could be installed. For context on how much more granular this data is than our earlier maps, there are 8.1 million census blocks. We have largely completed work on the second version of the Fabric, and I can definitively say that we have taken a big step forward.

The topline from the new Fabric is that it now reflects over 114 million broadband-serviceable locations, a net increase of 1.04 million. That tells us a few things. First, a net adjustment of less than 1 percent to the number of serviceable locations says that, on balance, the November pre-production draft of the National Broadband Map painted a helpful picture of where high-speed Internet service could be available. But it also demonstrates that we’re not resting on our laurels and, with the help of Fabric challengers and our own assessments, we’ve made important corrections and additions to the data. Let’s dig into some of notable details.

For starters, we’ve added 2.96 million new broadband-serviceable locations. Percentage-wise, we saw some of the most significant increases in Alaska, U.S. territories, and Tribal lands.

At the same time, we have removed 1.92 million locations from the first version. The reason for these reductions ranged from data refreshes to more sophisticated tools to help remove structures like garages and sheds from the total count.

The challenge process for our locations database contributed significantly to these refinements. For example, location challenges from states led to nearly 122,000 of the new location additions. But the majority of location additions and other adjustments were a result of the ongoing efforts of CostQuest, the contractor developing the Fabric. At our direction, CostQuest is continually updating and improving the dataset by refining their models and processes and using better input data sources such as new and more granular parcel data.

Providers used this improved location data for their second required filing of availability data, which concluded on March 1, and it will be displayed on the map later this Spring. While over time we expect future versions of the Fabric to require fewer refinements, these ongoing efforts to improve the Fabric outside of the challenge process will continue and will remain an important tool for the improvement of the National Broadband Map.

We remain on track to release new and improved maps later this Spring.

The amount of activity over the past four months to improve the National Broadband Map is certainly notable. What’s also notable is that this work is happening in a timely manner as required by the Broadband DATA Act and is consistent with our obligation to do a major refresh of our maps every six months and update the map a few times a month when we resolve availability challenges.

This progress would not have been possible without the extensive engagement of state and local leaders as well as the collaboration of NTIA and other federal partners in this effort. Thanks to their partnership, we will release a National Broadband Map this Spring that more closely reflects the state of connectivity on the ground. And we’ll do it again and again and again every six months, constantly strengthening this foundation for smarter broadband policymaking for years to come.

February 22, 2023

March 2023 Open Meeting Agenda

Jessica Rosenworcel | Chairwoman

We are a little under three weeks away from revealing the winners of this year’s Academy Awards, but you don’t have to wait to find out what the Commission has lined up for our Open Meeting just days after the Oscars. Here’s what to expect at our March meeting.

  • We’re harnessing the power of satellites to enhance mobile phone operations. Wireless carriers have increasingly begun collaborating with satellite operators to make sure smartphone users stay connected even in areas where there is no terrestrial mobile service. This connectivity can help facilitate life-saving rescues in remote locations and the innovative opportunities it presents will only grow. To support the expansion and evolution of new interoperable services, the Commission will, for the first time, propose a framework for increased collaboration between terrestrial mobile network operators and satellite service providers.
  • We’re bringing common sense and fairness to prison phone rates. The Commission’s long-running efforts to provide relief for families of incarcerated people forced to pay exorbitant and unreasonable telephone rates got a major boost last month when the President signed the bipartisan Martha Wright-Reed Just and Reasonable Communications Act. The new law closes a long-standing loophole and gives the Commission authority to combat unfair rates for calls within a state’s borders. The Commission will vote this March to begin the process of implementing this law and making it easier for families to stay connected.
  • We’re tightening the vise on illegal robocallers. Combatting illegal robocallers requires constant vigilance and consistently reviewing our protections to identify and close gaps in our defenses. In three weeks, the Commission will consider a number of new rules to improve the STIR/SHAKEN caller ID authentication framework. Notably, the proposed rules would require intermediate phone providers to authenticate certain calls, in addition to expanding robocall mitigation requirements for all providers and adopting more robust enforcement tools.
  • We’re protecting consumers from text messaging scams. Unwanted robotexts from invalid phone numbers have become a persistent, growing threat to consumers. The Commission will be voting to finalize its first-ever rules to focus specifically on scam texts. If adopted, the new rules would require mobile service providers to block robotext messages that are highly likely to be illegal. Looking to the future, we would also seek comment on expanding robotext-blocking initiatives.
  • We’re updating our equipment testing standards. The Commission’s equipment authorization program ensures that the communications equipment we all rely on operates effectively without causing harmful interference and complies with the Commission’s rules. The Commission will consider targeted updates to our rules to incorporate four new and updated standards that are integral to equipment testing to harmonize our rules with significant developments in the standards-setting community.
  • We’re making video programming more accessible. Audio description makes video programming more accessible to individuals who are blind or visually impaired by inserting narrated descriptions of a television program’s key visual elements during natural pauses in the program’s dialogue. The Commission has already adopted audio description requirements for broadcast TV stations in the top 100 of 210 markets. We will seek comment expanding audio description to all remaining broadcast markets and seek comment on whether the costs of further expansion would be reasonable.
  • We will also consider two items from our Enforcement Bureau.


January 25, 2023

February 2023 Open Meeting Agenda

Jessica Rosenworcel | Chairwoman

Next Monday, I will meet with My Sister’s Place, a local shelter for survivors of domestic violence and their children, along with other organizations working hard to help survivors get a fresh start. I welcome the opportunity to hear their stories and gain a better understanding of the challenges they face. I also look forward to discussing ways the FCC can help. Over the past year, the Commission has significantly stepped up its efforts to make sure those experiencing domestic violence have the ability to seek the help they need safely and securely. Monday’s discussion will help to ensure these ongoing efforts are informed by the experiences of domestic violence survivors and the organizations that serve them. I’m pleased to say that our February Open Meeting will be headlined by a proposal that will allow us to translate these discussions into action. Here’s what the Commission will consider three weeks from now.

  • We’re helping domestic violence survivors access safe and affordable connectivity. Private phone or internet service can help survivors break away from their abusers and find safe support networks. This past December, Congress passed the Safe Connections Act of 2022 to support the connectivity needs of survivors. The Commission will take up proposed rules to implement key provisions in the new law, drawing on work we have already done in an earlier proceeding. In particular, we will consider rules that would help survivors separate service lines from accounts that include their abusers, protect the privacy of calls made by survivors to domestic abuse hotlines, and support survivors who suffer from financial hardship access our Lifeline and Affordable Connectivity Programs.
  • We’re connecting Tribal communities. Libraries are a vital source of internet access across Indian country. The Commission recently adopted changes to our E-Rate program rules to make it easier for Tribal libraries to take advantage of this support, in addition to launching a pilot program to make sure all Tribal Libraries are connected. We will vote to seek comment on ways to further improve program rules and encourage greater Tribal participation in the program, in addition to exploring whether similar reforms may be needed to encourage greater participation by non-Tribal applicants.
  • We will also consider an adjudicatory matter from our Media Bureau.


January 4, 2023

January 2023 Open Meeting Agenda

Jessica Rosenworcel | Chairwoman

Happy new year! After a busy 2022, we’re ready to get things off to a productive start for 2023. Here’s what we have lined up for our first open meeting of the year.

  • We’re making sure life-saving counseling is there when you need it. Established in 2022, the new 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline has made it easier than ever for people in need to receive crisis counseling. The Commission will consider a proposal to establish reporting and notice requirements for any 988 outages. Similar outage reporting rules for 911 have helped us to identify vulnerabilities and to improve the reliability of that system. We aim to be able to do the same with 988.
  • We’re improving support for digital health in rural America. The Commission’s Rural Health Care Program expands access to telehealth and telemedicine services by providing financial support to eligible health care providers for high-speed broadband connections. These telehealth services make it much easier for patients in rural areas with fewer doctors to receive high-quality medical care. The Commission will vote on a package of proposals to resolve questions about the program. If adopted, these changes would make it easier for health care providers to receive support, reduce delays in funding commitments, and improve the program’s overall efficiency.
  • We will consider an adjudicatory matter from our Media Bureau.
  • We will also consider an action from our Enforcement Bureau.


December 31, 2022

2022 in Review: A Note from the Chairwoman

Jessica Rosenworcel | Chairwoman

Looking back on 2022, there is no question that it has been an eventful year at the Federal Communications Commission. For me what really sets this year apart from 2021 is that I was able get out of Washington and spend more time in more places across the country. To understand and appreciate why the agency’s work matters, there’s just no substitute for meeting people where they live and work.

From New Orleans to New Mexico and San Antonio to Charlotte, I met with people who have been able to get and stay connected thanks to the FCC’s Affordable Connectivity Program -- the largest broadband affordability effort in our nation’s history. Launched on New Year’s Eve, the ACP is currently helping more than 15 million households pay for high-speed internet service.

In Detroit, I visited Cass Tech High School to hear first-hand about how the Commission’s Emergency Connectivity Fund is helping to provide digital learning tools to close the Homework Gap. To date, the Commission has committed over $6.3 billion to support approximately 10,500 schools, 1,000 libraries, and 100 consortia, and providing over 12 million connected devices and over 7 million broadband connections.

We are also trying to narrow the Homework Gap by allowing E-Rate support to be used to connect school buses to Wi-Fi. Our new Wi-Fi on Wheels proposal could help turn ride time into connected time for schoolwork for the 25 million kids in this country who ride school buses, many of whom don't have reliable internet at home. We’re working to make that a reality for 2023.

In northern New Mexico, I recently got to see how changes to our E-Rate program are supporting broadband connectivity for the Navajo Nation and other Tribal communities. Not all Tribal Libraries have been able to take advantage of E-Rate because of jurisdictional quirks. We fixed those problems and launched a pilot program to make sure all Tribal Libraries are connected.

Perhaps my most memorable trip of the year was to a mobile crisis team dispatch center in Philadelphia. I joined Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra, Secretary of Veterans Affairs Denis McDonough, Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenny and many mental health professionals to promote the official launch of 988 as the new number to reach the Suicide and Crisis Lifeline. Thanks in part to the Commission’s work, if you text or dial 988, you will now be connected to professional, compassionate support for mental health emergencies. In the first full month that 988 was operational, we saw a 45 percent increase in people using the lifeline, compared to 2021 numbers. That’s over 100,000 more people seeking and receiving help in just one month. This is a really big deal that is going to save a lot of lives.

I also won’t soon forget my visits to the Johnson Space Center in Houston and the Chabot Space and Science Center in Oakland, either. Those may not seem like obvious trips for an FCC Chairwoman, but a new space age is here, and it demands new rules from the Commission. That’s why we launched our Space Innovation docket to promote United States leadership in the emerging space economy. That includes launching an inquiry on in-space servicing, assembly, and manufacturing—or ISAM. We also adopted a first-of-its-kind rule requiring that satellite operators in low-earth orbit dispose of their satellites within five years of the completing their missions. The new five-year rule replaces a decades-old 25-year standard and will mean more accountability and less risk of collisions that increase orbital debris and the likelihood of space communication failures.

To keep pace with the rapid development of the satellite sector and growing importance to space-based communications, I announced a plan to establish a new Space Bureau, as well as a standalone Office of International Affairs. This re-imagined bureau will promote long-term technical capacity to address satellite policies and improve our coordination with other agencies on these issues.

For the first time in years, I attended Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, where I announced our plans to auction spectrum in 2.5 GHz band, bringing new broadband coverage and competition mostly to rural areas around the country. We successfully completed this auction in September, and we’ve already begun issuing licenses to the auction winners in this band, meaning many of these carriers can begin deploying immediately.

Looking to the future, we also began an inquiry into the 12.7 GHz band, asking about how we can expand use of this 550 megahertz swath of mid-band spectrum, including for new exclusively-licensed opportunities as well as possible sharing approaches. These are airwaves that can unlock a significant chunk of valuable mid-band frequencies that may play a key role in delivering on the promise of next-generation wireless services, including 5G, 6G, and beyond. And we’re not stopping there, the FCC is already looking to what a 6G future could look like including its impact on the digital divide, machine learning, how it could make life easier and more efficient for consumers, and new ways to connect industries, technology, and communities.

We also established a new Enhanced Competition Incentive Program to encourage wireless licensees to make underutilized spectrum available to small carriers, Tribal Nations, and entities serving rural areas. This is a way to make sure spectrum in rural areas actually goes to those most likely to use it.

We started a proceeding to consider the role of receiver performance in spectrum management. For too long our wireless policy has focused entirely on regulating transmitters. Improvements in reception technology could enable additional services in the same or adjacent airwaves.

And we laid the groundwork for better cooperation with our Federal partners in spectrum matters through the establishment with NTIA of the Spectrum Coordination Initiative, which involves actions by both agencies to strengthen the processes for decision making and information sharing and to work cooperatively to resolve spectrum policy issues.

While we’ve been busy building the foundation for the future of wireless technology, we’ve also remained focused on keeping the technology already in our networks secure. That’s why this year, we adopted new rules prohibiting communications equipment deemed to pose an unacceptable risk to national security from being authorized for importation or sale in the United States. We also prohibited the use of public funds to purchase covered equipment or services, launched the Secure and Trusted Communications Networks Reimbursement Program to remove insecure equipment that has already been installed in our networks, revoked operating authorities for Chinese state-owned carriers based on recommendations from national security agencies, and updated the process for approving submarine cable licenses to better address national security concerns.

This fall, I traveled to Florida and Puerto Rico where I met with Governor Pedro Pierlusi, to survey the recovery efforts after Hurricanes Ian and Fiona, which we followed up with a virtual field hearing about the impact of these hurricanes on communications. I also met with Governor John Bel Edwards and public safety officials to discuss network recovery at their Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparation in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Thanks to these initiatives, we’re not just learning lessons in 2022, we’re applying them. This year, we updated our rules to improve the reliability and resiliency of wireless networks during emergencies. The rules will help reduce wireless phone outages for the public and support faster service restoration after hurricanes, wildfires, and other disasters.

Building on this work to improve public safety, we launched a program that will for the first time share communications outage information in real time with state, federal territorial, and Tribal nation agencies. This can improve their situational awareness, enhance their ability to respond more quickly to outages affecting their communities, and help save lives.

We also modernized and streamlined our rules for programs that help first responders and other emergency personnel communicate during disasters. The updated rules will help ensure that these programs meet the needs of emergency personnel now and in the future, as technology advances.

I returned to Las Vegas for the largest annual gathering of the nation’s broadcasters, and we are also bringing new broadcast stations to the public. We completed an auction, which resulted in construction permits for 18 new television stations, and we have granted over 725 of the applications we received in last year’s window for new non-commercial FM stations.

We also proposed modifications in order to strengthen the process supporting our foreign sponsorship identification rules, and ultimately ensure greater transparency when foreign governments and their agents lease time to broadcast content on our public airwaves.

I went to Bucharest, Romania to see history made by my friend and colleague Doreen Bogdan-Martin, who became the first woman elected to lead the International Telecommunication Union’s Secretary General. The FCC worked tirelessly with our international peers to support her candidacy.

On top of all of these efforts, we have been pursuing an aggressive consumer protection agenda from Washington.

We are doubling down on efforts to stop scam robocalls. We have been attacking them from all angles—cutting off bad actors from our networks, requiring providers to block unwanted calls, and mandating technology to stop call spoofing. Some of our efforts are beginning to bear fruit. After we identified the companies behind the auto warranty robocall scam, we told the rest of the industry to cut them off and auto warranty calls fell by 80 percent. We’re also in the process of shutting down a student loan call campaign and looking for other scams to disrupt. Plus, we’re not doing this alone. We now have a memorandum of understanding with 43 state Attorneys Generals, the District of Columbia, and Guam to work together to go after illegal robocalls.

We released the preproduction draft of the nation’s new broadband maps, which provide the best picture to date of where broadband is and is not available across the country on a location-by-location basis. They represent a big improvement over the agency’s previous maps which only reported service by census blocks. The greater transparency offered by these new maps will create market pressures on internet providers to improve their coverage. The new maps will also help policymakers more accurately target investments to expand broadband to unserved and underserved areas and close the digital divide. And the maps will only get better from here thanks to an iterative challenge process required under the law.

One of the most effective ways to make broadband more affordable is by promoting competition. One-third of people in this country live in multi-tenant units like apartments, which often offer limited choices when it comes to internet service because landlords cut exclusive deals and shut out competition. To improve competition and consumer choice, the Commission adopted rules to ban these kickbacks that keep out competitors and to improve access to in-building wiring.

The Commission adopted and released the new Broadband Label that broadband providers will display at point-of-sale to enable consumers to easily shop for services among different providers and plans.

We are also working to make sure your sensitive data isn’t being mishandled. Geolocation data tells mobile carriers where we are at any given moment and where we’ve been. That’s why I sent letters to the 15 largest mobile carriers demanding information on how they handle this data, and why we are investigating whether the carriers are in compliance with FCC rules that require carriers to fully disclose to consumers how they are using and sharing geolocation data.

We took action to help protect America’s communications networks against cyberattacks by seeking public comment on vulnerabilities threatening the security and integrity of the Border Gateway Protocol, or BGP, which is central to the Internet’s global routing system.

We kicked off an investigation into digital discrimination, as directed by Congress in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. Your zip code shouldn’t determine your access to broadband, and as one of our last major actions of 2022, we initiated a rulemaking to tackle these important and complex issues.

Finishing where I began, it’s no exaggeration to say that the actions I’ve just outlined will directly impact millions of people across the country in a positive way. But what really keeps me pushing forward is not statistics. It’s more the stories from my travels. It’s the mother in San Antonio who was moved to tears when she explained to me how much easier schoolwork has been for her children since they got home broadband. It’s the employee at the mobile crisis center who survived a suicide attempt thanks to the Suicide Prevention Hotline and said 988 will make it so much easier for people like her to reach out and receive help. It’s my counterpart from the Ukrainian telecom commission who helped me see how United States support mattered and awed me with her strength and resilience.

There are so many others whose stories inspire me, just as there are many other FCC actions from 2022, which I have not mentioned. Thank you to all the FCC staff who made this progress possible. Here’s to an even more productive 2023.

Broadband: With Jessica Rosenworcel

Broadband Conversations

Dedicated to amplifying the voices of women who are making a difference in our digital lives.

Broadband Conversations is dedicated to highlighting women who are making an impact on our digital lives. Each episode, Federal Communications Commission Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel will talk to women who are breaking new ground and forging new paths in technology, media, and innovation about what they're working on, what's on their minds, what they think is the next for the future. Because there are just too few, it's time to amplify these women's voices.


On this episode of Broadband Conversations, listeners will get to meet Kathryn de Wit, Manager of the Broadband Research Initiative at The Pew Charitable Trusts. Kathryn and her team at Pew have done critical work understanding just who has connectivity and who does not—data that is fundamental for closing the digital divide. As the on-going pandemic has demonstrated, access to broadband is no longer just nice-to-have, it is a necessity for work, education, healthcare, and so much of modern life. Kathryn shares what states are doing to get more people connected and how their efforts could be models for the future.

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Kimball Sekaquaptewa, CTO Santa Fe Indian School

On this episode of Broadband Conversations, listeners will get to meet Kimball Sekaquaptewa, Chief Technology Officer at the Santa Fe Indian School. A member of the Hopi Tribe, Kimball has decades of experience working to bring connectivity to Tribal schools and libraries. Her efforts were recently featured in the New York Times and by Good Morning America. She has been a vocal advocate for getting all students connected, which is especially critical on Tribal Lands where four out of 10 students lack access to broadband at home. During a pandemic that has hit Tribal communities especially hard, listeners will hear how Kimball is working to help students get and stay connected for remote learning.

Join Commissioner Rosenworcel for the second half of her conversation with five female Superintendents who are leading communities across the country through an unprecedented school year. Listeners will hear more from Dr. Kristi Wilson from Arizona, Dr. Ann Levett from Georgia, Krestin Bahr and Dr. Susan Enfield from Washington, and Heidi Sipe from Oregon about what school looks like right now for students who have been asked to learn remotely at home. You’ll hear how schools are communicating with their students and families about the technology challenges they face, solutions they see for solving the Homework Gap, and what these education leaders hope for the future of digital life and learning.

Classes may have begun, but the start of this school year is unlike any other. With a virus that has forced so many schools to keep their doors closed, millions of students are in online classes at home. We wanted to hear how women who are leading school systems are navigating these days and get their thoughts on how as a nation we can improve digital education. In Part One of this special two-part conversation, listeners will meet five Superintendents from across the country: Dr. Kristi Wilson from Arizona, Dr. Ann Levett from Georgia, Krestin Bahr and Dr. Susan Enfield from Washington, and Heidi Sipe from Oregon. You’ll hear how they prepared for this new school year, what challenges they face, and how they are working to develop new ideas to keep their communities learning during this difficult time.

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Congresswoman Suzan DelBene

Before being elected to Congress, Congresswoman Suzan DelBene spent over twenty years as a technology entrepreneur and business leader. In Congress, she’s used this experience to help develop policies that create jobs and foster innovation. She’s also used this background to advance cybersecurity and improve data privacy. Listeners will get to hear how she believes we can secure our networks and protect against online threats as we enter in the next generation of technology.

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Emily Ramshaw, Co-Founder and CEO of The 19th

Journalism has always been essential part of how we make decisions about our lives, our communities, and our country. During the pandemic getting the facts we need to know about what is happening in the world around us is especially important. On this episode of Broadband Conversations, listeners will meet Emily Ramshaw, who has started a new nonprofit, nonpartisan newsroom during the ongoing health crisis. She is the CEO of The 19th, which focuses on telling stories about women, policy, and politics. With women holding one-third of the jobs deemed essential, Emily’s efforts to bring attention to their stories and so much more that might be missed by more traditional news outlets is absolutely critical as we navigate the challenges ahead.

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Leah Lizarondo, CEO and Co-Founder of 412 Food Rescue

The ongoing public health crisis has had a devastating impact on our economy.  It has led to increased unemployment and greater food insecurity for households across the country.  As a result, we are seeing record-breaking lines with people waiting in cars and on sidewalks to pick up groceries to feed their families.  On this episode of Broadband Conversations, listeners will get to meet a woman who is doing her part to help.  Leah Lizarondo is the CEO and Co-Founder of 412 Food Rescue, a food recovery organization that uses technology to link retailers who have excess food with volunteers who are able to distribute it to families and individuals experiencing food insecurity.

Dr. Nicol Turner Lee is an expert in equitable access to digital technology and the new Director of the Brookings’ Center for Technology Innovation. Her research explores broadband deployment and the intersection of race, civic engagement, and criminal justice reform. In this episode listeners will get to hear her about her work to expand digital equity and her belief that we need to build a technology ecosystem that provides innovation and opportunities for all.

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Julie Samuels, Executive Director, Tech:NYC

The Coronavirus has impacted every town and city across the country. One of the hardest hit has been New York City, where Julie Samuels, the guest on this episode of Broadband Conversations, lives and works. Julie is the Executive Director of Tech:NYC and on this episode listeners will hear what she is seeing firsthand and how technology could assist in this crisis, as so much of in our lives, from work to healthcare to education, has migrated online.

Before a siren blares or an ambulance arrives, 911 operators are the first, first responders. Now we are relying on these operators and dispatchers to coordinate emergency response during a national crisis. In this episode, listeners will meet Karima Holmes, Director of the Office of Unified Communications for the District of Columbia. Director Holmes oversees the city’s emergency 911 operations and she is working to protect the District’s 700,000 residents and 20 million annual visitors.