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Ajit Pai

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Ajit Pai
Ajit V. Pai headshot.jpg
Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission
Assumed office
January 23, 2017
PresidentDonald Trump
Preceded byTom Wheeler
Member of the Federal Communications Commission
Assumed office
May 14, 2012
PresidentBarack Obama
Donald Trump
Preceded byMeredith Attwell Baker
Personal details
Ajit Varadaraj Pai

(1973-01-10) January 10, 1973 (age 48)
Buffalo, New York, U.S.
Political partyRepublican
Spouse(s)Janine Van Lancker (m. 2010–present) «start: (2010)»"Marriage: Janine Van Lancker to Ajit Pai" Location: (linkback:
Alma materHarvard University (AB)
University of Chicago (JD)

Ajit Varadaraj Pai (born January 10, 1973) is an American attorney. He serves as the Chairman of the United States Federal Communications Commission (FCC) since 2017. He is the first Indian American to hold the office.

Early life

Pai was born in Buffalo, New York. He was raised in Parsons, Kansas. Pai studied at Harvard University and at the University of Chicago.

Early political career

He has served in various positions at the FCC since being appointed to the commission by President Barack Obama in May 2012, at the recommendation of Mitch McConnell. He was confirmed unanimously by the United States Senate on May 7, 2012, and was sworn in on May 14, 2012, for a five-year term.[1]

Chairman of the FCC

In January 2017, President Donald Trump named Pai as Chairman of the agency.[2][3]

In March 2017, Trump announced that he would renominate Pai to serve another five-year term at the FCC, which will require confirmation by the U.S. Senate.[4] Before his appointment to the FCC, Pai held positions with the Department of Justice, the United States Senate, the FCC's Office of General Counsel, and Verizon Communications.

On May 18, 2017, the Federal Communications Commission took the first formal step toward dismantling the net neutrality rules.[5]

Pai was confirmed by the U.S. Senate for an extra five-year term as FCC Chairman on October 2, 2017.[6]

He became well known in 2017 in his criticism and attempt to end the Obama-era policy net neutrality. It received wide criticism.

On November 30, 2020, Pai announced his plans to leave the FCC.[7] He will resign his post as FCC Chairman on January 20, the day that Joe Biden is inaugurated as President of the United States.

Personal life

Pai lives in Arlington, Virginia, with his wife Janine Van Lancker, daughter Annabelle Malathi Pai, and son Alexander Madhav Pai.


  1. "Trump’s FCC: Tom Wheeler to be replaced, set-top box reform could be dead". Nov 10, 2016. 
  2. "President Trump Designates Ajit Pai as Chairman of FCC". Jan 22, 2017. 
  3. Devin Coldewey (January 23, 2017), Trump’s FCC Chairman pick Ajit Pai heralds a weaker, meeker Commission,, retrieved February 5, 2017 
  4. Johnson, Ted (March 7, 2017). President Trump Renominates Ajit Pai for New FCC Term. Variety. Retrieved 8 March 2017. 
  5. Harding McGill, Margaret (2017-05-18). "FCC kicks off effort to roll back net neutrality rules". Politico. Retrieved 2017-05-18. 
  6. Shepardson, David (October 2, 2017). Senate Confirms FCC Chairman to New Five-Year Term. U.S. News & World Report. Retrieved 3 October 2017. 
  7. Feiner, Lauren (2020-11-30). "FCC Chairman Ajit Pai will step down on January 20" (in en). 

Other websites

Media related to Ajit Pai at Wikimedia Commons