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When President Obama nominated her to the FCC in May 2012, Rosenworcel felt she had come full circle. After graduating from New York University School of Law, she worked as an attorney in the communications field, before heading into "the trenches" to work under then-FCC Chairman Michael Copps. She departed for a job at the Senate Commerce Committee under the late Sen. Daniel Inouye, D-Hawaii, and Sen. Jay Rockefeller, D-W.Va., two men who she says inspired her to fight for what's right, while giving dignity to her opponents. "By the time I got here, I think it's fair to say I've been familiar with a lot of issues before the agency — the good ones and the bad ones," the Connecticut native says. In her first year at the FCC, Rosenworcel has proposed updating its E-Rate program, which helps schools and libraries get access to high-speed broadband. Asked about her career trajectory, the 41-year-old said that there are several physicians in her family and that she and her brother (now a drummer for the band Guster) wanted to be different. When she isn't working, the self-described optimist can be found playing with her two children, reading, and, occasionally, skiing. As for what the future holds, Rosenworcel says it's too soon to tell. "I like policy and big ideas, but I also like executing and getting things done. Sometimes that can be a challenge in these halls," she says, laughing. "That's the most diplomatic way I'll say it."

This article is from the archive of our partner National Journal.

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