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Kenneth A. Cox, lawyer, MCI executive

Kenneth A. Cox, 94, a member of the Federal Communications Commission in the 1960s who became a senior vice president and director of MCI Communications, died of a heart ailment Oct. 31 at his home in Bethesda.

His death was confirmed by his son Jeffrey N. Cox.

Mr. Cox was a partner in a Seattle law firm before settling in the Washington area in 1961 to serve as chief of the FCC’s broadcast bureau. He previously had worked in communications law from 1956 to 1957 as special counsel to the Senate Commerce Committee.

President John F. Kennedy named Mr. Cox an FCC commissioner in 1963, and he served until 1970. That year, he was presented with an Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University award for “championing the public interest in broadcasting.” The award cited his “continuing insistence upon the public’s right to challenge individual station licenses” and his support for public television.

Mr. Cox worked for MCI from 1970 to 1987 and then remained counsel to the telecommunications business until 2000. For much of his MCI career, he also was counsel to the communications law firm Haley, Bader and Potts, which had MCI as a client.

Kenneth Allen Cox was born in Topeka, Kan., and he completed high school in Seattle. He was a 1938 graduate of the University of Washington and a 1940 graduate of its law school. The next year, he received a master’s degree in law from the University of Michigan.

He served in the Army during World War II and the Korean War.

He was a past board member of National Public Radio and past board chairman of the National Advertising Review Board, a self-regulating body for the advertising industry. His other memberships included Westmoreland Congregational United Church of Christ in Bethesda.

Survivors include his wife, Nona Fumerton Cox of Bethesda, whom he married in 1943; three sons, Gregory Cox of Vancouver, B.C., Jeffrey N. Cox of Boulder, Colo., and Douglas R. Cox of Potomac; a brother; and four grandchildren.

— Adam Bernstein

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