Former Tupelo attorney, Barnett, leaves FCC post

By NEMS Daily Journal

WASHINGTON – Former Tupelo attorney Jamie Barnett, a retired Navy rear admiral, is leaving his position as the Federal Communications Commission’s public safety and homeland security chief.
Barnett will become senior vice president of the Potomac Institute for Policy Studies, a leading science and technology policy think tank. He worked at the institute as a senior research fellow before joining the FCC in July 2009.
Under Barnett’s leadership, the FCC’s Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau played a leading role in the establishment of the public safety broadband network. He created the Cybersecurity and Communications Reliability Division within PSHSB, which supported major cybersecurity work by a federal advisory committee known as the Communications Security, Reliability and Interoperability Council.
In March 2012, CSRIC delivered a voluntary Code of Conduct for Internet service providers.
“Jamie is an extraordinarily talented and effective leader, a valued colleague and an outstanding and dedicated public servant,” said FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski. “Thanks to his efforts, our country’s communications networks are stronger and more resilient, and Americans are and will be safer in significant ways.”
Barnett also proposed the first ever nationwide test of the Emergency Alert System, which was conducted on Nov. 9, 2011, to identify and correct problems in the nation’s ability to notify Americans of a major disaster or crisis. During his tenure, PSHSB has adopted rules to increase the location accuracy of 911 calls coming from wireless callers and has laid the ground work for Next Generation 911, which will include the ability to reach 911 with text, photos and videos.
He led an effort to defeat contraband cell phones in prisons through the use of innovative technologies.
Barnett served in the Navy and Navy Reserve for 32 years, and his last position before retiring in 2008 was deputy commander of the Navy Expeditionary Combat Command.
He was formerly a partner in the law firm of Mitchell, McNutt and Sams in Tupelo.