Chairman Genachowski Appoints Director of Digital Learning
Federal Communications Commission
News Media Information 202 / 418-0500445 12th Street, S.W.
Washington, D. C. 20554
This is an unofficial announcement of Commission action. Release of the full text of a Commission order constitutes official action.
See MCI v. FCC. 515 F 2d 385 (D.C. Circ 1974).
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
NEWS MEDIA CONTACT:April 16, 2013
Neil Grace, 202-418-0506
FCC CHAIRMAN JULIUS GENACHOWSKI APPOINTS DIRECTOR OF DIGITAL
LEARNING TO LEAD FCC EDUCATION TECHNOLOGY INITIATIVES
Michael Steffen, legal advisor to the Chairman, appointed to new digital learning role;
Matthew Quinn named Director of Healthcare Initiatives
Washington, D.C. – FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski today announced the appointment of Michael
Steffen as Director of Digital Learning to lead the FCC’s work within the agency and across government,
public, and private partners to modernize broadband infrastructure in U.S. schools and libraries and
expand access to the opportunities of digital technologies for America’s teachers, students, and parents.
The FCC is the largest funder of Internet connectivity in K-12 schools in the United States.
Chairman Genachowski said, “We are at a critical moment for education technology. Broadband and
digital tools have game-changing potential for education. Our significant E-Rate reforms in 2010 were a
strong start to lower costs and expand broadband access to schools and libraries, but we’re going to need
to take some more big steps to unlock the opportunity of digital learning. Michael Steffen has been a key
part of my senior leadership team, spearheading numerous major accomplishments to expand access to
broadband. I am thrilled that he’ll now be bringing his rigorous analysis, problem-solving, and consensus-
building skills to his new role as Director of Digital Learning.”
The creation of the new position builds on the Commission’s ongoing work in education. Last year,
Chairman Genachowski and Secretary of Education Arne Duncan launched the Digital Textbooks
Initiative, a collaboration between the FCC, the Department of Education, the education technology
industry, and nonprofit organizations to give all students access to advanced digital learning materials
within five years. The FCC and Department of Education also joined technology and education leaders to
form the Leading Education by Advancing Digital (LEAD) Commission to analyze trends and present
policy and funding recommendations. LEAD is co-chaired by Columbia University President Lee
Bollinger, TPG Capital co-founder James Coulter, former Secretary of Education Margaret Spellings and
Common Sense Media founder and CEO James Steyer. In 2011, the Commission adopted significant
reforms of its E-Rate program to expand access to school connectivity after hours, facilitate access to
fiber, and modernize application procedures.
Today’s announcement continues the Chairman’s appointment of dedicated cross-bureau leadership to
advance broadband deployment and use for critical sectors of our economy. Last month, the Chairman
appointed Matthew Quinn as Director of Healthcare Initiatives. In this role, Quinn leads the agency’s
efforts in facilitating and promoting communications technologies and services that improve the quality
of health care for all citizens and help reduce health care costs; facilitating the availability of medical
devices that use spectrum; and ensuring hospitals and other health care facilities have required
connectivity. In addition, Quinn advises the FCC on health issues, working closely with the team
overhauling the $400 million Rural Health Care program, and coordinating with federal partners
including the NIH and the FDA, and with the private health care sector to develop effective FCC
programs related to healthcare technology.
Michael Steffenfirst joined the Commission in 2009, and has most recently served as the Chairman’s
legal advisor on wireline, international, and Internet policy issues. In that role, he has overseen
implementation of the Commission’s landmark overhaul of its rural universal service programs and
creation of the Connect America Fund, the largest-ever broadband infrastructure program for rural
America. He has also overseen all Commission activities related to universal service funding for schools
and libraries, coordinated on education technology and connectivity issues across government, and served
as the Commission’s liaison to private sector and non-profit initiatives, including the LEAD Commission.
Mr. Steffen also led the launch of the Commission’s most sophisticated and in-depth data collection ever
for enterprise and community anchor broadband services; release of two Measuring Broadband America
reports on consumer broadband speed and quality; creation of the Technology Transitions Task Force to
comprehensively review Commission policies in light of ongoing network and market transitions;
streamlining and modernization of reporting and regulatory burdens across the International Bureau; and
other priority initiatives.
Prior to joining the Chairman’s office, Mr. Steffen served as a Special Counsel in the Office of General
Counsel, where he advised on universal service issues, major transactions, and other priority projects.
Mr. Steffen previously served as Executive Director of Universities Allied for Essential Medicines,
working on global access to medicines and student empowerment on global health issues, and at the
Center for Democracy and Technology, focusing on copyright, Internet governance, and consumer
privacy. Mr. Steffen graduated from Yale Law School and clerked for Judge David S. Tatel on the D.C.
Circuit Court of Appeals.
Matthew Quinnjoined the Commission from that National Institute of Standards and Technology and
the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, where he led efforts to improve the usability and
accessibility of health IT and to realize the value of health IT in emerging models of care delivery. In
addition, Mr. Quinn served as program management lead for the National Resource Center for Health IT,
as lead staff for Quality Subcommittee of the National Committee on Vital and Health Statistics and as
Co-Chair of the Assistive Technology Subcommittee of the Interagency Committee for Disability
Before joining government, Mr. Quinn was the Healthcare Industry Program Manager for Teradata and
was responsible for healthcare strategy and partnerships for the analytic data solutions company. Prior,
he led marketing for Quantros, a patient safety and clinical outcomes improvement firm, managed GE
Healthcare's "Six Sigma for Healthcare" clinical outcomes performance improvement products and
services, helped build an early personal health record company, and served as an Army Engineer Officer.
Mr. Quinn earned a B.S. in environmental engineering from the United States Military Academy at West
Point and an M.B.A. from Colorado State University.
Note: We are currently transitioning our documents into web compatible formats for easier reading. We have done our best to supply this content to you in a presentable form, but there may be some formatting issues while we improve the technology. The original version of the document is available as a PDF, Word Document, or as plain text.