You are on page 1of 6

February 21, 2018

The Honorable Charles Schumer


Democratic Leader
United States Senate
S-221
Washington, DC 20510

Dear Leader Schumer:

As you continue your consideration of nominees for the Democratic seat on the Federal
Communications Commission, we strongly recommend the nomination of Geoffrey Starks.
Geoffrey is eminently qualified for this position. Born in Kansas City, Geoffrey attended
Harvard University where he graduated Magna Cum Laude. From there, he worked in state
government and his passion for public service led him to Yale Law School where he
distinguished himself as an active member of that community.

Geoffrey was appointed by President Obama to serve in the United States Department of Justice,
the Office of the Deputy Attorney General. In this role, he served as senior counsel (part of the
leadership team at the Department of Justice). He advised the Deputy Attorney General on a
variety of matters, both domestic and international. He was responsible for healthcare and
financial fraud matters and also advised the Department on civil, criminal, cyber, and national
security matters. Once again, Geoffrey distinguished himself, earning the Attorney General
Award for Exceptional Service, the highest honor a Department of Justice employee can receive.

Most recently, Geoffrey has served as the Assistant Chief of the Enforcement Bureau at the
Federal Communications Commission. As part of the leadership team, Geoffrey conducts
investigations under federal communications laws, advises on important legal matters, and sits
on the Universal Service Fund Council, which coordinates issues regarding services that are vital
to low income and rural Americans.

Much like Congress, America’s independent agencies cannot fully represent all the communities
they were designed to serve unless their senior leadership reflects the whole of America.

The Federal Communications Commission, through its work to implement and enforce
America’s communications laws and regulations, needs diverse representation to ensure that
more voices and backgrounds are part of the most senior conversations on the direction of
communications policy in America.

At every turn, Geoffrey Starks has proven to be an exceptional attorney, team member, and
public servant. His nomination to be an FCC Commissioner would ensure that a diverse voice
remains in one of our nation’s most important institutions.

1
Together, we can continue the progress in ensuring that our government becomes truly
representative of our nation. We look forward to working with you.

Thank you,

Spencer Overton
President
Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies

2
March 7, 2018

The Honorable Charles Schumer


Democratic Leader
United States Senate
S-221
Washington DC 20510

Dear Honorable Schumer,

On behalf of the membership of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, I am writing to


urge you to consider Geoffrey Starks as Commissioner for the Democratic seat on the Federal
Communications Commission. As you may know, this is the 50th anniversary of Dr. King’s
“poor People’s Campaign” as well as his assassination. I need not tell you the harsh reality
being faced by all Americans, but especially people of color. A recent study shows that Black
wealth is less than it was 50 years ago at the start of the poor people’s campaign and even
worse, a study late last year predicted black wealth would be zero by 2053. Nowhere is this
reality reflected more than in the demise of many black institutions. We are down to less than
20 black owned banks, with projections being zero by 2021. Black Colleges and Universities are
under tremendous financial pressures and black owned media is spiraling toward non-
existence. It is critical in these times that our voices be heard and represented in centers of
power. Corporate greed and malfeasance has left us with the richest having all the wealth and
the rest of us scrounging for scraps. Mergers and rules that benefit only the powerful are
leaving Americans with no hope of ever living the American dream.

I can write volumes about Mr. Starks’ qualifications, Harvard graduate, Yale Law school, DOJ,
and most recently, he has served as the Assistant Chief of the Enforcement Bureau at the FCC.
As part of the leadership team, he conducts investigations under federal communications laws,
advises on important legal matters, and sits on the Universal Service Fund Council, which
coordinates issues regarding services that are vital to low income and rural Americans. He has
the proven leadership to serve as Commissioner.
Now, more than ever, we need to preserve and foster diversity in our policy making
institutions. As, you consider his nomination, I would ask for the opportunity to sit down with
you in the coming days or weeks and explain in person how important it is in the public interest
to consider Mr. Starks for this prestigious nomination.

Sincerely,

Charles Steele, Jr.


National President and CEO, SCLC