FCC veteran Rick Kaplan is tapped for a newly created position leading the trade group’s efforts in “spectrum and innovation policy.”
The National Association of Broadcasters announced Thursday that former top FCC staffer Rick Kaplan has been hired as executive vice president, strategic planning. In this newly created position, Kaplan will lead NAB’s efforts related to spectrum and innovation policy. His first day is Oct. 22.
“We are delighted to announce the hiring of Rick Kaplan, whose credibility and integrity are well-recognized both at the commission and in telecom circles in Washington,” said NAB President-CEO Gordon Smith. “His expertise on spectrum issues will benefit broadcasters greatly as we work with policymakers to ensure a robust local television business for decades to come.”
Kaplan worked extensively in media and wireless fields while at the FCC. He joined the FCC in 2009 as deputy coordinator for the DTV transition, helping facilitate the final stages of its completion, before becoming chief of staff to Commissioner Mignon Clyburn. Kaplan also served as chief counsel to Chairman Julius Genachowski, serving as the chairman’s lead policy counsel on issues such as wireless, media, engineering, and public safety issues. He left the commission this summer after serving as chief of the Wireless Telecommunications Bureau.
“I’m thrilled to be joining a team of talented professionals at one of Washington’s most respected trade associations —NAB — at a critical juncture in the history of broadcasting,” Kaplan said. “I look forward to representing the interests of local TV stations that have a rich legacy of service to their communities, and a vibrant future in the communications ecosystem of tomorrow.”
While with the FCC, Kaplan championed causes including spectral efficiency and spectrum sharing. He also helped lead the commission’s review of major transactions including Comcast-NBCU, AT&T-T-Mobile, AT&T-Qualcomm and Verizon-SpectrumCo.
Kaplan began his career as public relations professional in the sports industry and started his own PR and management company, Kaplan Sports Group Inc. He was an associate with the law practice Sidley Austin LLP, working in federal and state court litigation and advising clients on financial regulation and privacy.
Immediately prior to joining the FCC, Kaplan was assistant counsel in the Office of the General Counsel with the House of Representatives.
Kaplan earned a B.A. in philosophy from Wesleyan University and a J.D. from Columbia Law School, where he was editor-in-chief of the Columbia Law Review. He began his legal career as a law clerk for Judge Harry T. Edwards of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit.