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Genachowski to Stay on Through Transition

FCC chairman thanks many in his exit speech to staffers

In his official announcement to FCC staff this morning about his impending departure, FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski said he’s going to be around for a “few more weeks.”

Today was not the time for farewells, he said, because there will be other opportunities for that.

Speculation that he would leave had been building for months, and increased once fellow Commissioner Robert McDowell announced he intends to depart soon, too.

President Barack Obama appointed his former Harvard Law School classmate as FCC chairman in 2009.

Genachowski said he called the staff meeting to thank all 1,700 agency staffers. “Thanks to your outstanding work, American’s broadband economy is thriving and has renewed U.S. leadership around the world. The apps economy is a ‘made in the U.S.A.’ phenomenon…which has created hundreds of thousands of jobs.”

“You’ve each contributed to this story,” Genachowski told assembled staffers. “I couldn’t be more proud of your efforts.”

“Today isn’t goodbye,” he said, adding that he intends to stay in his role to help with the transition.

We’ve reported the White House is vetting several potential replacements for the Democratic leader of the five-member commission. Because McDowell, a Republican, is leaving as well, that allows members of both parties to be appointed, with a greater chance of achieving Senate confirmation for both.