New FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski was sworn in today, providing the agency with its first permanent chairman in five months and marking the end of Commissioner Jonathan Adelstein's tenure on the commission.

A Democrat and law-school friend of President Barack Obama, Genachowski was confirmed by the Senate last Thursday evening, as was Republican Commissioner Robert McDowell, who also was confirmed for a five-year term. Genachowski has assumed remainder of the Adelstein's term, and Adelstein will become administrator of the Rural Utilities Service (RUS), FCC spokesman David Fiske said.

"[Genachowski's] term will go until 2013," Fiske said.

Joining Genachowski and McDowell on the commission is Democratic Commissioner Michael Copps, who has served as acting chairman since the new presidential administration took office in January. While Copps said he will miss Adelstein on the commission, he expressed optimism about the leadership Genachowski will bring to the FCC.

"He knows the FCC well, brings impressive private sector and technology experience with him, and enjoys deserved renown for innovative thinking and new approaches," Copps said in a prepared statement. "I look forward to working with him on the many issues awaiting his attention."

Mignon Clyburn — a regulator from South Carolina and daughter of House Majority Whip James Clyburn — has been selected to fill the other Democratic seat on the FCC. Former National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) official Meredith Attwell Baker to fill the final Republican slot on the commission. Clyburn and Baker have yet to be confirmed by the Senate.

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