In a sign of the times, the NCTA named Kyle McSlarrow, a cable industry outsider with strong Republican ties to the White House and Congress, as its new president and CEO today. McSlarrow, who announced his resignation as deputy energy secretary last week, will take over for the retiring Robert Sachs, a Democrat, as cable's top political lobbyist on March 1.
As cable officials noted in announcing his hiring, McSlarrow's political connections are key because Congress plans to conduct a major overhaul of the 1996 Telecom Act this year. Besides working in the Bush Administration for four years, McSlarrow served as a chief aide to former Senate Majority Leaders Bob Dole and Trent Lott and the late Sen. Paul Coverdell, a Georgia Republican. As a staunchly Republican candidate, he also ran twice for the House from northern Virginia in 1992 and 1994, losing both times to incumbent Rep. James Moran (D-Va.) in bitterly fought races.