Mignon Clyburn, one of four FCC Commissioners, stepping down

Updated: Apr. 17, 2018 at 5:14 PM EDT
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WASHINGTON, D.C. (WIS) - FCC Commissioner Mignon Clyburn, daughter of U.S. Representative James Clyburn from South Carolina's 6th District, is stepping down, according to the FCC's official Twitter page.

Clyburn has been with the FCC since 2009 and will be ending her second term. She was appointed by former President Barack Obama and was sworn in for the second time in 2013.

In stark contrast to FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, Clyburn was vocal in her displeasure with the FCC's decision to repeal net neutrality laws that were established in 2015.

"I am both disappointed and hopeful," Clyburn said in a February statement following the repeal. "Disappointed that this is one more anti-consumer notch on this FCC's belt, but hopeful that the arc of history is bent in favor of net neutrality protections. Whether it is litigation, state action, or some other mechanism that brings it about, I am sure that robust net neutrality protections will prevail with the American public!"

The other leaders, including Pai, took to social media to thank Clyburn for her service and express tribute to the work she has done over the years with the FCC.

Commissioners Rosenworcel, O'Rielly, and Chairman Pai were originally nominated and confirmed during President Obama's tenure and Pai was elevated to Chairman and Carr was nominated under President Trump in 2017.

Before joining the FCC, Clyburn spent 11 years as part of the SC 6th District Public Service Commission and for 14 years before that was the publisher and general manager of the Coastal Times — founded by her family — which is a weekly paper in Charleston that focuses on issues affecting the African American community.

According to Politico, Clyburn is seen as a candidate for the congressional seat held by her father, but Clyburn has not commented on her political future.

The National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners issued a statement regarding Clyburn's resignation.

"On behalf of NARUC, I want to thank Commissioner Mignon Clyburn for her service," NARUC President John Betkoski, III, said. "First, as a state regulator as a member of the South Carolina Public Service Commission before her tenure at the FCC.  She has always embodied the dedication and integrity that one expects of a public servant. Mignon Clyburn truly knows that serving the public interest requires an unwavering commitment to balancing the needs of all parties. We are grateful for her ardent efforts on many fronts, such as leading efforts related to limiting the costs of inmate telephone calls, expanding the Lifeline Program for Low-Income Consumers to include broadband and adopting the FCC Open Internet Order to protect net neutrality. Her public service leadership roles, which include being the first woman to lead the FCC as Acting Chair, make her a natural role model. Moreover, she has been an active participant in NARUC meetings—willing to engage in frank, collegial dialogues with fervor, intellect and a sense of humor.  We wish her all the best."

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