Former FCC commissioner joins USTelecom board

Former FCC Commissioner Kathleen Abernathy has joined the board of directors for USTelecom, a trade association representing large and medium-sized telephone companies.

Abernathy, a Republican, served on the FCC under the George W. Bush Administration from 2001 to 2005.  She is now chief legal officer of Frontier Communications. Most recently, she was a partner at Wilkinson Barker Knauer. 

While at the FCC, she tended to favor less government oversight of the communications industry.

Frontier Communications will soon be the largest rural telephone company in the U.S., thanks to the $8.6 billion purchase last year of 4.8 million Verizon access lines in 14 states. That includes West Virginia, the home state of Senate Commerce Committee Chairman Jay Rockefeller.

The USTelecom board also includes James Cicconi of AT&T, Jeff Gardner of Windstream Corp., Tom Gerke of CenturyLink and Tom Tauke of Verizon.