Mark S. Fowler

Mark S. Fowler
Mark S. Fowler
Chairman of the
Federal Communications Commission
In office
May 18, 1981 – April 17, 1987
Appointed by Ronald Reagan
Preceded by Robert E. Lee
Succeeded by Dennis R. Patrick
Personal details
Born October 6, 1941 (1941-10-06) (age 70)
Toronto, Canada
Political party Republican
Residence Naples, Florida[1]
Alma mater University of Florida (B.A.,J.D.)
Profession Businessman

Mark S. Fowler served as Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission from May 18, 1981 to April 17, 1987. Appointed by Ronald Reagan,[2] he led repeal of the Fairness Doctrine and spearheaded the deregulatory trend in telecommunications policy, stating, "The television is just another appliance - it's a toaster with pictures."[3]

Fowler was born in October 1941 in Toronto, Canada. He received both his Bachelors degree and Juris Doctorate from the University of Florida.[4]

Career after the FCC

Fowler was a communications counsel at the law firm of Latham & Watkins LLP from 1987 until 2000 and in that capacity practiced before the FCC. From 1990 to 1993 Mr. Fowler also served on the board of directors for Eon Corporation, then doing business as TV Answer. TV Answer was one of the first companies to work with the FCC to explore the use of narrow band radio-wave frequencies for interactive television—where programmers and their viewers could communicate back and forth through a small device attached to a television set.[5] He has been a director of Beasley Broadcast Group, Inc. since February 2000. From 2006-8, his compensation as director was close to $50,000 annually; in 2009 it fell to about $20,000. He served as a director of TalkAmerica, Inc., a publicly held company until the company was sold in December 2006. Mr. Fowler also served as chairman of AssureSat, Inc., a satellite services provider that he co-founded in 1997 until the company was dissolved in December 2004.[6]


  1. ^ Mark S. Fowler profile, Forbes magazine website. Retrieved 2010-08-23.
  2. ^ FCC Complete List of Commissioners
  3. ^ Fowler, Mark. (1981, November). Reason interview: Mark S. Fowler. Reason. Retrieved on November 1, 2007 from
  4. ^ Ronald Reagan: Nomination of Mark S. Fowler To Be a Member of the Federal Communications Commission, and Designation as Chairman
  5. ^ Andrews, Edmund L. (August 17, 1994). Airwave Entrepreneurs Still Feeling Their Way. New York Times
  6. ^ Mark S. Fowler profile, Forbes magazine website. Retrieved 2010-08-23.

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