The Democrat is an elected member of the Public Service Commission of South Carolina and the daughter of House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn, also of South Carolina.
As expected, President Barack Obama today announced that he intends to nominate Mignon L. Clyburn to fill the Democratic seat being vacated by Jonathan Adelstein on the five-person FCC. (Adelstein is leaving the FCC for an appointment with the Agriculture Department’s Rural Utilities Service.)
For the past 11 years, Clyburn has been an elected member of the Public Service Commission of South Carolina, which regulates investor-owned public utilities, including providers of telecommunications services.
Clyburn has other attributes that may help in landing the FCC job.
She is a woman and an African-American — assets in diversity-conscious Washington — and, perhaps more important, she is the daughter of one of the most powerful men on Capitol Hill, Majority Whip Jim Clyburn of South Carolina.
Clyburn was the subject of a profile in TVNewsCheck in February. She is a past chair of the Southeastern Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners and is current chair of the Washington Action Committee of the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC).
Clyburn also serves on NARUC’s Audit Committee and Utilities Market Access Partnership Board.
She graduated from the University of South Carolina with a degree in banking, finance and economics in 1984.
Before her election to the PSC, she spent 14 years as the publisher and general manager of the now-defunct The Coastal Times, a small African-American weekly newspaper in Charleston, S.C.
If formally nominated and confirmed by the Senate, Clyburn will likely serve at the commission with two other Democrats: Julius Genachowski, whom Obama has nominated to be the next chairman, and incumbent Michael Copps, first appointed by President Bush in 2001.