President Barack Obama has formally nominated Julius Genachowski to be FCC chairman.

If confirmed, Genachowski will take over from Acting Chair Michael Copps, who succeeded Kevin Martin when Martin resigned at the change of administrations.

The nomination confirms CED’s report from January (story here).

Julius Genachowski

Genachowski was mostly recently a venture capitalist, but previously had served as chief counsel to former FCC Chairman Reed Hundt. He also attended Harvard Law School with Obama and led the development of the president-elect’s technology and innovation agenda. He has a reputation as an advocate for network neutrality.

The National Cable & Telecommunications Association (NCTA) quickly expressed support for the pick.

“We congratulate Julius Genachowski on his nomination as chairman of the Federal Communications Commission,” said NCTA President and CEO Kyle McSlarrow. “He is an excellent choice and combines the policy-savvy and real-world experience that will be necessary to confront both the challenges and opportunities presented at a time of incredible change sweeping the media, communications and technology marketplace.”

The American Cable Association (ACA) also saluted Obama's decision to nominate Genachowski.

"The president has made a good choice to head a crucial agency like the FCC at a time of rapid technological change," ACA President and CEO Matt Polka said. "Under Genachowski's leadership, we hope the FCC will appreciate that small, independent cable operators have made the investment needed to provide high-speed Internet access to millions of Americans living in rural communities in all 50 states. We look forward to working with Genachowski on developing new approaches to broadband deployment following his Senate confirmation.

"The Internet has thrived due to policies of regulatory restraint initiated a decade ago by FCC Chairman William Kennard," Polka added. "We are eager to show the new chairman how broadband customers of ACA members are benefiting from a legal climate that gives network owners a fair amount of autonomy to manage their networks."

More Broadband Direct 03/03/09:
•  Genachowski named FCC chair
•  Charter out of gate with online sports viewing
•  Rentrak to evaluate linear TV viewing for Charter
•  Comcast, Cablevision extend Wi-Fi into N.J.
•  Cablevision reminder on debt buy-back
•  TiVo's fourth-quarter loss narrows on lower costs
•  JDSU expands optical test portfolio
•  Ambit renames itself Ubee Interactive
•  SCTE names Emeritus Members
•  Kabel Deutschland picks Proxilliant
•  Roku offers access to Amazon's VOD
•  Free but fickle, digital TV reception eludes some
•  Broadband Briefs for 03/03/09