On Friday, Sept. 14, Federal Communications Commission (FCC) chairman Ajit Pai will make an appearance in Maine as the keynote speaker at The Maine Heritage Policy Center’s (MHPC) annual Freedom & Opportunity Luncheon. The luncheon, MHPC’s largest annual event, will be held from 12 p.m. to 2 p.m. at the Holiday Inn By The Bay in Portland, Maine.
Before being designated as chairman of the FCC by President Donald Trump in January 2017, Pai was appointed as one of five FCC commissioners by then-President Barack Obama in May 2012 and was unanimously confirmed by the United States Senate.
Chairman Pai’s contributions at the FCC include the recent repeal of “net neutrality” regulations and efforts to eliminate waste, fraud and abuse in federal programs. Pai was the first commissioner to demand an end to corporate welfare, which saved taxpayers more than $3 billion.
Chairman Pai’s regulatory philosophy is informed by a few simple principles, competition paramount among them. Rules that reflect these principles spur innovation and investment, Pai says, and lead to better products and services, lower prices, job creation and faster economic growth.
Broadband, Pai believes, is critical in modern American life. Especially when it comes to innovation, the Internet has leveled the playing field. It has created a phenomenon that Chairman Pai calls the “democratization of entrepreneurship.” In other words, with a good idea and a broadband connection, entrepreneurs anywhere can compete in ways unthinkable a generation ago.
Yet too many Americans still don’t have broadband. They are left on the other side of the “digital divide.” Chairman Pai’s discussion will focus on plans to expand broadband by streamlining the process for deploying wireless infrastructure and preserving Internet freedom so that the online world can flourish free from heavy-handed government intervention.
In 1994, Pai graduated with honors from Harvard University before graduating from the University of Chicago Law School in 1997. The son of immigrants from India, Pai grew up in Parsons, Kan., and currently resides in Arlington, Va., with his wife and their two children.
Individual luncheon tickets can be purchased for $150. For more information, and to register for the event, please visit mainepolicy.org/event/ajitpai/