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Ajit Pai
Ajit V. Pai headshot.jpg
Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission
In office
January 23, 2017 – January 20, 2021
President Donald Trump
Preceded by Tom Wheeler
Succeeded by Vacant
Member of the Federal Communications Commission
In office
May 14, 2012 – January 20, 2021
President Barack Obama
Donald Trump
Preceded by Meredith Attwell Baker
Succeeded by Vacant
Personal details
Ajit Varadaraj Pai

January 10, 1973 (1973-01-10) (age 48)
Buffalo, New York, U.S.
Political party Republican
Janine Van Lancker (m. 2010)
Children 2
Alma mater Harvard 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) from 2017 to 2021. 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.

Chairman of the FCC

In January 2017, President Donald Trump named Pai as Chairman of the agency.

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. 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.

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

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. He resigned from his post as FCC Chairman on January 20, the day that Joe Biden was 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.

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