The CTIA said that Meredith Attwell Baker, a current NBCUniversal executive and former Republican commissioner at the FCC, will replace Steve Largent as president and CEO of the wireless trade group, effective June 2. Baker will become the first woman to be president of CTIA. Largent, 59, announced his retirement last October and has served as president since 2003.
Baker, 45, will bring strong Washington insider credentials to the job as the wireless industry's chief lobbyist. For the past two years Baker has served as senior vice president of government affairs for Comcast-NBCUniversal; NBCUniversal is owned by Comcast (NASDAQ: CMCSA). Before that she was an FCC commissioner from 2009-2011, having been nominated by President Obama. She has also served as acting administrator of the National Telecommunications and Information Administration, which oversees the government's use of spectrum among many other things.
According to the CTIA, Baker wants to user her tenure to put "more emphasis on technical and engineering expertise related to spectrum and wireless technologies," work with industry players and government spectrum users "to produce a viable five-year plan for the future of spectrum usage," and also "begin to regularly assess how efficiently spectrum is being used."
Largent's main mission since he announced his impending retirement has been steering the CTIA toward its "Super Mobility Week" trade show in September. The event combines the association's two annual events and also will include content from other trade groups and organizations, such as Berlin's IFA. Release
Correction, April 23, 2014: This article incorrectly stated that Baker is a Comcast executive. She is an executive at NBCUniversal, which is owned by Comcast.