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JUNE 27, 2001

Good Morning. As the new guy on the block, I am here this morning to listen and to learn more about the accomplishments of the distinguished individuals who will be receiving the Catherine Forster Public Service Awards. But I appreciate this moment to say how honored I am I be here with you, and how happy I am to be a witness to this celebration of excellence in public service. The individuals we honor this morning are exceptional members of what I have already learned is an exceptional agency. While I am new here at the FCC, I am not so new to government, having worked in public service for 23 of my 31 years in this city. I have also worked in the private sector, and what I have seen in the three short weeks I've been here is that the FCC Team has an uncommonly high share of bright, talented and dedicated people - among this city's best, inside or outside of government.

You'll hear me speak a lot about public interest while I am here, because it is at the heart of what I believe. The position that I hold, the position that you hold - each of you - is a public trust. Our jobs here have a high purpose to be served. And the people we honor this morning have taken that trust and built upon it and returned value and good to the American people.

So I am eager to learn more about these valued public servants, and I believe we will take away from their stories both inspiration from their personal dedication, as well as renewed commitment to the public service challenges which constitute the business of this great agency.

Congratulations to each of the honorees for what you have done and for the tireless efforts you put into getting it done. You made a difference. You showed the way. You should be enormously proud of what you have accomplished. We are enormously proud of you.