Mary Azcuenaga

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Mary Laurie Azcuenaga
Commissioner of the Federal Trade Commission
In office
November 27, 1984 – June 3, 1998
PresidentRonald Reagan
George H. W. Bush
Bill Clinton
Preceded byMichael Pertschuk
Succeeded byThomas B. Leary
Personal details
BornJuly 25, 1945
Council, Idaho
Political partyIndependent
EducationStanford University (A.B.)
University of Chicago Law School (J.D.)

Mary Laurie Azcuenaga[1] (born July 25, 1945) is an American attorney who served from 1984 to 1998 as a member of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).[2] As of 2017, Azcuenaga is one of just three political independents to serve on the FTC.[3]

Early life and career[edit]

Born to a family of Basque-American descent,[4] Azcuenaga was born on July 25, 1945 in Council, Idaho. Azcuenaga received her undergraduate degree from Stanford University, graduating with a bachelor's degree (A.B.) in 1967.

In 1973, she graduated from the University of Chicago Law School with a Juris Doctor (J.D.) degree. Azcuenaga began her career within the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), joining the agency as an assistant to the General Counsel in 1975.[5]

Member of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC)[edit]

Azcuenaga remained in various legal roles within the FTC until 1984, when she was appointed to serve as a commissioner by President Ronald Reagan.[6] Azcuenaga was sworn into the body on November 27, 1984 to a term ending on September 25, 1991,[7] replacing former commissioner Michael Pertschuk.[8]

The Washington Post reported on her nomination by noting that as a political independent, she was seen as less conservative than the FTC's two Republican appointees. Additionally, it was noted that Azcuenaga was seen as a strong nominee owing to her being a woman of Hispanic background. However, the article noted that Azcuenaga "doesn't believe in using the Hispanic label for political advantage", with Azcuenaga herself stating "I've been told I count as a Hispanic... I'm proud of my Basque heritage."[9]

In 1991, she was re-appointed to a second term in office by President George H. W. Bush in 1991. Azcuenaga remained on the FTC until June 3, 1998, when she chose to resign months before her second term was set to expire.[10] During her tenure, Azcuenaga joined a majority in opposition to taking action against cigarette brand Camel over its "Joe Camel" cartoon mascot. In a joint statement, Azcuenaga argued:

"Although it may seem intuitive to some that the Joe Camel advertising campaign would lead more children to smoke, or lead children to smoke more, the evidence to support that intuition is not there."[11]

Azcuenaga was replaced on the FTC in 1999 by antitrust attorney Thomas B. Leary, a member of the Republican Party.[12] As of 2017, Azcuenaga is one of just three independents to have served on the FTC, along with Philip Elman (who served from 1961 to 1970) and Pamela Jones Harbour (who served from 2003 to 2009).[3]

References[edit]

  1. ^ United States, ed. (1992). Nomination of Mary L. Azcuenaga to be a Federal Trade commissioner: hearing before the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, United States Senate, One Hundred Second Congress, first session, October 29, 1991. S. hrg. Washington: U.S. G.P.O. : For sale by the U.S. G.P.O., Supt. of Docs., Congressional Sales Office. ISBN 978-0-16-037809-6.
  2. ^ "FTC Commissioner Mary L. Azcuenaga To Resign". Federal Trade Commission. 1998-03-26. Retrieved 2021-09-11.
  3. ^ a b "Independent commissioners have shaped key FTC decisions - FTCWatch". www.mlexwatch.com. Retrieved 2021-09-11.
  4. ^ Isikoff, Michael (1984-07-31). "THE FTC". Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2021-09-11.
  5. ^ "Nomination of Mary L. Azcuenaga To Be a Commissioner of the Federal Trade Commission | The American Presidency Project". www.presidency.ucsb.edu. Retrieved 2021-09-11.
  6. ^ "Independent commissioners have shaped key FTC decisions - FTCWatch". www.mlexwatch.com. Retrieved 2021-09-11.
  7. ^ "FTC Commissioner Mary L. Azcuenaga To Resign". Federal Trade Commission. 1998-03-26. Retrieved 2021-09-11.
  8. ^ "Reagan expected to name woman to replace FTC's Pertschuk". UPI. Retrieved 2021-09-11.
  9. ^ Isikoff, Michael (1984-07-31). "THE FTC". Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2021-09-11.
  10. ^ "FTC Commissioner Mary L. Azcuenaga To Resign". Federal Trade Commission. 1998-03-26. Retrieved 2021-09-11.
  11. ^ Elliott, Stuart (1994-06-08). "The F.T.C. Explains Its Joe Camel Decision". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2021-09-11.
  12. ^ News, Bloomberg (1999-05-14). "Lawyer Is Nominated for F.T.C. Position". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2021-09-11. {{cite news}}: |last= has generic name (help)