Broadcasters shouldn’t fret that that the FCC is taking over their biggest trade group.
Even though the National Association of Broadcasters’ two senior attorneys now have close ties to FCC Chairman Michael Powell and years of experience at the agency, they will remain wary of Powell initiatives to reclaim analog TV channels by 2009 and share digital spectrum with other telecom services.
“I wouldn’t look for any major changes.” said NAB legal and regulatory affairs chief Marsha MacBride. Last week she hired 26-year FCC veteran and longtime colleague Jane Mago as general counsel. “I still have the same board and I am their attorney. Broadcasters feel under attack even as they produce a huge benefit for the American public,” she said.
Both women have worked for Powell in several capacities. Mago was his general counsel from 2001 to 2003, has most recently been head of the FCC Office of Strategic Planning and Policy Analysis. MacBride was Powell’s chief of staff before joining NAB late last year to succeed Jeff Baumann, who retired. Mago is replacing Jack Goodman who lost to MacBride in the contest for Baumann’s post.