Administrator of the National Telecommunications and Information Administration: Who Is David Redl?

Wednesday, June 07, 2017
David Redl

Former telecom industry lobbyist David Redl has been nominated by President Donald Trump to serve as administrator of the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA). Located in the Department of Commerce, NTIA is responsible for managing federal use of the radio frequency spectrum, which includes significant military and intelligence uses. Although NTIA directly regulates only federal wireless use, its policies affect the private use of (and access to) wireless technologies like cell phones, the Internet, public radio and television, wireless technology, and airplane travel. Perceived as open to the interests of his former telecom employers, Redl’s nomination was greeted with widespread approval among telecom corporations and their lobbyists.


David John Redl was born February 1, 1981, in Poughkeepsie, New York, to David and Susan Redl. He was student body president at Arlington High School. He earned a B.A. in Journalism and Political Science at Penn State University in 2003, and a JD at the Catholic University of America in 2006.


During law school, Redl received three internships at major players in the telecom industry. He was a legal intern at the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) during his second year of law school (September 2004 to April 2005). The following summer, Redl worked as a legal intern at CTIA (Cellular Telecommunications and Internet Association) from June to August 2005. Finally, he worked in Congress as an intern for Rep. Sue Kelly, a Republican who represented Poughkeepsie, from February to May 2006.


After law school, Redl spent the first five years of his legal career working for CTIA, the leading lobbying group for telecom companies like AT&T, Verizon, etc. Starting as a legal intern in August 2006, Redl was promoted to counsel for regulatory affairs in April 2007, and then to director of regulatory affairs in July 2009. He represented the wireless industry on net neutrality, broadband, new technology, and spectrum issues.


In February 2011, Redl left CTIA to work as Republican counsel for the House Committee on Energy and Commerce. In July 2013, Redl was promoted to chief counsel for the newly created Subcommittee on Communications and Technology. He also serves as the primary legal advisor to Committee Chair Fred Upton (R-Michigan) and Communications Subcommittee Chair Greg Walden (R-Oregon) on telecom and technology issues.


David Redl is a member of the Federalist Society, an ultra-conservative, neoliberal association of lawyers founded by prominent Republican politicians, lawyers, judges, and academics. He lives in Falls Church, Virginia with his wife, Amy (Smith) and their son, Benjamin.

-Matt Bewig


To Learn More:

Official Biography

Trump to Nominate New Top Telecom Policy Adviser (by Ali Breland, The Hill)

Senate, House Aides Said to Vie for Top NTIA Spot (by Lydia Beyoud, BNA News) 


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