Monday, July 01, 2013

Women at the FCC

The FCC has always been a wee bit sexist. I was reading in an article about the AWRT in 1951that they were excitedly expecting the nomination of a woman as an FCC commissioner. It didn't happen. I read a few days later about the first female chairwoman of the FCC... appointed only this year! I got curious as to how many women had been commissioners at the FCC. It turned out to be a very small number an inexcusably small number. The FCC actually was grossly imbalanced until the mid 1980s. More here.


Harry Truman nominated the first woman, Frieda Barkin Hennock to the FCC in 1948. As the FCC (excluding the years it was the FRC) it's leadership had been all male for 14 years. Ms. Hennock served until 1955, a tenure of 23 years. No more women were appointed until 1971, another 16 years —whole presidencies passed. Hennock was the only woman on the commission for a period of almost 40 years.

The situation didn't improve much after Charlotte Reid was appointed in 1971.  Margarite White wasn't appointed until 1976...to replace Reid.  They had agreed to a token woman on the commission, but only one and only one at a time. But in the 1980s it improved. Over the following three decades 29 more commissioners were nominated, 17 male, 12 female — an much closer ratio of 41% to 59%. It's a wild improvement over their historical percentage.  Since 1934 there have been 15 female commissioners out of 80, that's 19%. But before 1980... it was only 8%.  Below I post the entire commissioner list straight form the FCC website for your indignant reference.

Commissioner Party
Affiliation
State
From To
Eugene O. Sykes
  Chairman
Democrat Mississippi Jul 11, 1934
Jul 11, 1934
Apr 5, 1939
Mar 8, 1935
Thad H. Brown Republican Ohio Jul 11, 1934 Jun 30, 1940
Paul A. Walker
  Acting Chairman
  Chairman
Democrat Oklahoma Jul 11, 1934
Nov 3, 1947
Feb 28, 1952
Jun30, 1953
Dec 28, 1947
Apr 17, 1953
Norman Case Republican Rhode Island Jul 11, 1934 Jun 30, 1945
Irvin Stewart Democrat Texas Jul 11, 1934 Jun 30, 1937
George Henry Payne Republican New York Jul 11, 1934 Jun 30, 1943
Hampson Gary Democrat Texas Jul 11, 1934 Jan 1, 1935
Anning S. Prall
  Chairman
Democrat New York Jan 17, 1935
Mar 9, 1935
Jul 23, 1937
Jul 23, 1937
Tunis Craven Democrat DC
Virginia
Aug 25, 1937
Jul 2, 1956
Jun 30, 1944
Mar 25, 1963
Frank McNinch
   Chairman
Democrat North Carolina Oct 1, 1937
Oct 1, 1937
Aug 31, 1939
Aug 31, 1939
Frederic I. Thompson Democrat Alabama Apr 13, 1939 Jun 30, 1941
James Lawrence Fly
  Chairman
Democrat Texas Sept 1, 1939
Sept 1, 1939
Nov 13, 1944
Nov 13, 1944
Ray C. Wakefield Republican California Mar 22, 1941 Jun 30, 1947
Clifford J. Durr Democrat Alabama Nov 1, 1941 Jun 30, 1948
Ewell K. Jett
  Interim Chairman
Independent Maryland Feb 15, 1944
Nov 16, 1944
Dec 31, 1947
Dec 20, 1944
Paul A. Porter
  Chairman
Democrat Kentucky Dec 21, 1944
Dec 21, 1944
Feb 25, 1946
Feb 25, 1946
Charles R. Denny
  Acting Chairman
  Chairman
Democrat DC Mar 30, 1945
Feb 26, 1946
Dec 4, 1946
Oct 31, 1947
Dec 3, 1946
Oct 31, 1947
William H. Willis Republican Vermont Jul 23, 1945 Mar 6, 1946
Rosel H. Hyde
  Chairman
  Acting Chairman
  Acting Chairman
  Chairman
Republican Idaho Apr 17, 1946
Apr 18, 1953
Apr 19, 1954
May 1, 1966
Jun 27, 1966
Oct 31, 1969
Apr 18, 1954
Oct 3, 1954
Jun 26, 1966
Oct 31, 1969
Edward M. Webster Independent DC Apr 10, 1947 Jun 30, 1956
Robert F. Jones Republican Ohio Sept 5, 1947 Sept 19, 1952
Wayne Coy
  Chairman
Democrat Indiana Dec 29, 1947
Dec 29, 1947
Feb 21, 1952
Feb 21, 1952
George E. Sterling Republican Maine Jan 2, 1948 Sept 30, 1954
Frieda B. Hennock Democrat New York Jul 6, 1948 Jun 30, 1955
Robert T. Bartley Democrat Texas Mar 6, 1952 Jun 30, 1972
Eugene H. Merrill Democrat Utah Oct 6, 1952 Apr 15, 1953
John C. Doerfer
  Chairman
Republican Wisconsin Apr 15, 1953
Jul 1, 1957
Mar 10, 1960
Mar 10, 1960
Robert E. Lee
  Interim Chairman
  Chairman
Republican Illinois Oct 6, 1953
Feb 5, 1981
Apr 13, 1981
Jun 30, 1981
Apr 12, 1981
May 18,1981
George McConnaughey
  Chairman
Republican Ohio Oct 4, 1954 Jun 30, 1957
Frederick W. Ford
  Chairman
Republican West Virginia Aug 29, 1957
Mar 15, 1960
Dec 31, 1964
Mar 1, 1961
John S. Cross Democrat Arkansas May 23, 1958 Sept 30, 1962
Charles H. King Republican Michigan Jul 19, 1960 Mar 2, 1961
Newton N. Minow
  Chairman
Democrat Illinois Mar 2, 1961
Mar 2, 1961
Jun 1, 1963
Jun 1, 1963
E. William Henry
  Chairman
Democrat Tennessee Oct 2, 1962
Jun 2, 1963
May 1, 1966
May 1, 1966
Kenneth A. Cox Democrat Washington Mar 26, 1963 Aug 31, 1970
Lee Loevinger Democrat Minnesota Jun 11, 1963 Jun 30, 1968
James J. Wadsworth Republican New York May 5, 1965 Oct. 31, 1969
Nicholas Johnson Democrat Iowa Jul 1 1966 Dec 5, 1973
H. Rex Lee Democrat DC Oct 28, 1968 Dec 31, 1973
Dean Burch
  Chairman
Republican Arizona Oct 31, 1969
Oct 31, 1969
Mar 8, 1974
Mar 8, 1974
Robert Wells Republican Kansas Nov 6, 1969 Nov 1, 1971
Thomas J. Houser Republican Illinois Jan 6, 1971 Oct 5, 1971
Charlotte T. Reid Republican Illinois Oct 8, 1971 Jul 1, 1976
Richard E. Wiley
  Chairman
Republican Illinois Jan 5, 1972
Mar 8, 1974
Oct 13, 1977
Oct 13, 1977
Benjamin L. Hooks Democrat Tennessee Jul 5, 1972 Jul 25, 1977
James H. Quello
  Chairman
Democrat Michigan Apr 30, 1974
Feb 5, 1993
Nov 1, 1997
Nov 28, 1993
Glen O. Robinson Democrat Minnesota Jul 10, 1974 Aug 30, 1976
Abbott M. Washburn Republican Minnesota Jul 10, 1974 Oct 1, 1982
Joseph R. Fogarty Democrat Rhode Island Sept 17, 1976 Jun 30, 1983
Margita E. White Republican Sweden Sept 23, 1976 Feb 28, 1979
Charles D. Ferris
  Chairman
Democrat Massachusetts Oct 17, 1977
Oct 17, 1977
Apr 10, 1981
Feb 4, 1981
Tyrone Brown Democrat Virginia Nov 15, 1977 Jan 31, 1981
Anne P. Jones Republican Massachusetts Apr 7, 1979 May 31, 1983
Mark S. Fowler
  Chairman
Republican Canada May 18, 1981
May 18, 1981
Apr 17, 1987
Apr 17, 1987
Mimi Weyforth Dawson Republican Missouri Jul 6, 1981 Dec 3, 1987
Henry M. Rivera Democrat New Mexico Aug 10, 1981 Sept 15, 1985
Stephen A. Sharp Republican Ohio Oct 4, 1982 Jun 30, 1983
Dennis R. Patrick
  Chairman
Republican California Dec 2, 1983
Apr 18, 1987
Apr 17, 1987
Aug 7, 1989
Patricia Diaz Dennis Democrat New Mexico Jun 25, 1986 Sept 29, 1989
Alfred C. Sikes
  Chairman
Republican Missouri Aug 8, 1989
Aug 8, 1989
Jan 19, 1993
Jan 19, 1993
Sherrie P. Marshall Republican Florida Aug 21, 1989 Apr 30, 1993
Andrew C. Barrett Republican Illinois Sept 8, 1989 Mar 30, 1996
Ervin S. Duggan Democrat Georgia Feb 28, 1990 Jan 30, 1994
Reed E. Hundt
  Chairman
Democrat Maryland Nov 29, 1993
Nov 29, 1993
Nov 3, 1997
Nov 3, 1997
Susan Ness Democrat New Jersey May 19, 1994 May 30, 2001
Rachelle B. Chong Republican California May 23, 1994 Nov 3, 1997
William E. Kennard
  Chairman
Democrat California Nov 3, 1997
Nov 3, 1997
Jan 19, 2001
Jan 19, 2001
Harold W. Furchtgott-Roth Republican Tennessee Nov 3, 1997 May 30, 2001
Michael K. Powell
  Chairman
Republican Virginia Nov 3, 1997
Jan 22, 2001
Mar 17, 2005
Mar 17, 2005
Gloria Tristani Democrat New Mexico Nov 3, 1997 Sept 7, 2001
Kathleen Q. Abernathy Republican Kentucky May 31, 2001 Dec 9, 2005
Michael J. Copps
  Acting Chairman
Democrat Wisconsin May 31, 2001
Jan 22, 2009
Dec 31, 2011
June 28, 2009
Kevin J. Martin
  Chairman
Republican North Carolina Jul 3, 2001
Mar 18, 2005
Jan 19, 2009
Jan 19, 2009
Jonathan S. Adelstein Democrat South Dakota Dec 3, 2002 June 29, 2009
Deborah Taylor Tate Republican Tennessee Jan 3, 2006 Jan 3, 2009
Robert M. McDowell Republican Virginia Jun 1, 2006 May 17, 2013
Julius Genachowski
  Chairman
Democrat New York Jun 29, 2009 May 17, 2013
Meredith Attwell Baker Republican Texas July 31, 2009 June 3, 2011
Mignon Clyburn
  Acting Chairwoman
Democrat South Carolina August 3, 2009
May 20, 2013

Jessica Rosenworcel Democrat Connecticut May 11, 2012
Ajit Pai Republican Kansas May 14, 2012