Henry M. RiveraPARTNER
Henry is an internationally recognized communications expert, author, speaker, and conference leader in the communications field. A former Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Commissioner, this highly experienced practitioner has been named one of the District of Columbia’s “Super Lawyers” and among The Best Lawyers in America in Communications Law. He has also been singled out as a “Leading Lawyer” by Chambers USA and named among the top 12 Telecom experts in the U.S. by Legal Media Group’s Best of the Best.
- More than 38 years of experience representing clients in all types of business transactions, including telecommunications transactions and telecommunications-related bankruptcies.
- Significant experience with all Washington advocacy venues of significance to communications policy-making.
- Experienced in all types of FCC rulemaking proceedings.
- Counseled clients on routine observance of FCC rules, including development of strategic plans and advice on implications for their businesses of pending federal communications-related legislation and FCC regulations.
- Advised international clients on regulatory and political issues regarding regulation and privatization, including counseling foreign postal, telegraph, and telephone services (PTTs) on the organization and operation of regulatory agencies necessitated by privatization of their telecommunications providers.
- Served as an expert witness in communications law-related cases in federal and state courts, and in state administrative proceedings, and in an arbitration.
- Served as a senior advisor to several U.S. international telecommunications delegations and to the U.S. Department of State.
- Served as a member of the INTELSAT Panel of Legal Experts.
- Represented and counseled a major local exchange carrier in connection with obtaining a local cable television franchise and in drafting a franchise agreement for an internet protocol television (IPTV) system.
- Represented and counseled a major local exchange carrier and its affiliated cable television companies and wireless carrier in all federal and state regulatory matters.
- Represented a major airline in an FCC proceeding involving Over-the-Air-Reception-Devices.
- Represented major wireless companies in spectrum lease and license transfer transactions.
- Served as trustee of several trusts created to facilitate mergers and acquisitions of broadcast properties.
- Significant experience representing telecommunications service providers and their customers in all aspects of the E-Rate program, particularly appeals from adverse Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) decisions.
- Commissioner, Federal Communications Commission (1981-1985)
- Co-Head, Agency Review Team, Obama-Biden Presidential Transition Team (2008)
- Member, Federal Advisory Committee on International Communications and Information Policy, U.S. Department of State (2004-Present)
- Chair and Member, Federal Advisory Committee on Diversity in the Digital Age, Federal Communications Commission (2003-Present)
- Member, Advanced Television Field Test Technical Oversight Committee, Federal Communications Commission (1992)
- Member, Advisory Committee on Advanced Television Service, Federal Communications Commission (1988)
- Member, Federal-State Joint Board on Separations, Federal Communications Commission (1983-1985)
- Supervisory Commissioner, Telecommunications Industry Advisory Group to Revise Uniform System of Accounts, Federal Communications Commission (1982)
- Chairman, Advisory Committee on Alternative Financing for Minority Opportunities in Telecommunications, Federal Communications Commission (1982)
- American Bar Association (ABA)
- Delegate, American Bar Association House of Delegates from the Federal Communications Bar Association (1999-2001)
- Life Fellow, American Bar Foundation (ABF)
- Chair, Advisory Council, Archdiocesan Legal Network (2004-2006)
- General Counsel, Benton Foundation (2003-Present)
- Chair and Board Member, Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Washington, Inc. (2004-2011)
- Board Member, Emma Bowen Foundation for Minority Interests in Media (1987-Present)
- Federal Communications Bar Association (FCBA)
- Foundation Board of Trustees (2008-Present)
- President (1995-1996)
- Director, Foundation for the National Archives (2007-2011)
- Strategic Counsel, Internet Innovation Alliance (IIA) (2011)
- Board of Trustees, Legal Aid Society of the District of Columbia (1995-2011)
- Chairman (1994-2011) and Chair Emeritus (2012-Present), Minority Media and Telecommunications Council (MMTC)
- Board Member, University of New Mexico Alumni Association (2012-Present)
- University of New Mexico Foundation (2003-2008)
HONORS & AWARDS
- Named by Lawdragon as one of "500 Leading Lawyers in America" (2014)
- Recognized as a "Leading Lawyer" by Lawyers World (2012)
- Recognized as a "Leading Lawyer" by InterContinental Finance Magazine (2012)
- Named a preeminent telecommunications practitioner (2008, 2010) and a preeminent figure in global telecom deals (2011) by Legal Media Group's Expert Guides: Guide to the World's Leading Telecommunications Lawyers
- Recipient of the Federal Communications Bar Association's Distinguished Service Award (2007)
- Recipient of The Independent Spanish Broadcasters Association "Friend of Spanish Broadcasting" award (2007)
- Named one of DC's "Super Lawyers" for Communications by Super Lawyers magazine (2007-2015, Corporate Counsel Edition, August 2008)
- Included in The Best Lawyers in America directory for Communications Law (2007-2015)
- Listed by Chambers USA as one of "America's Leading Lawyers for Business" in Telecom, Broadcast & Satellite: Regulatory (2006-2011)
- Named among the top 12 Telecom experts in the U.S. by Legal Media Group's Best of the Best (2006)
- Recognized by the Archdiocesan Legal Network and John Carroll Society for outstanding pro bono service
- Recognized as a "Leading Individual" in the field of Communications & IT law by the Practical Law Company's Which Lawyer? directory (2008-2009)
- Named as one of the "practice area's elite" in the International Who's Who of Regulatory Communications Lawyers (2007-2011)
- AV Peer Review Rating, Martindale-Hubbell's highest ranking by peers for general ethical standards and legal ability