Copps submits notice to resign from FCC

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"Ubiquitous, opportunity-creating broadband and a resource-rich media capable of informing our civic dialogue are critically-important components of our future success as a people, and I intend to keep speaking about these challenges as a private citizen in the years ahead."

President Obama has nominated former Senate Commerce Committee aid Jessica Rosenworcel to replace Copps; she worked as his senior legal adviser from 2003 to 2007. Observers believe Rosenworcel's objectives at the FCC will closely resemble those pursued by Copps.

Both Rosenworcel and fellow nominee Ajit Pai are considered uncontroversial but Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) has promised to block the nominations when they reach the Senate floor unless the FCC releases documents related to its review of wireless firm LightSquared.

Before coming to Washington, Copps was a professor of U.S. history at Loyola University of the South. Copps earned a B.A. from Wofford College and a Ph.D. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.