A former FCC Chairman now holds the Chairman title for the AT&T (NYSE:T) Board of Directors. The board chose Bill Kennard; his appointment is effective January 2021, after the carrier’s current Executive Board Chairman, Randall Stephenson, retires.
AT&T said earlier this year it planned to elect an independent chairman when Stephenson retired from the board in January, after serving in that role since 2007. Kennard was general counsel to the FCC from 1993 to 1997. In 1997, he was appointed Chairman of the agency, a position he held until 2001. From 2009 to 2013, he was the U.S. Ambassador to the European Union.
Kennard also has held positions with The Carlyle Group, a global asset management firm, at which he led investments in the telecommunications and media sectors. He was also with the law firm of Verner, Liipfert, Bernhard, McPherson and Hand (now DLA Piper), as a partner and member of the board of directors.
“Bill’s deep knowledge of communications, media and technology, proven leadership and broad experience across capital markets and government uniquely positions him to serve as AT&T’s new chairman,” Stephenson said. “He is an outstanding choice to lead our board of talented directors who possess diverse expertise and experience.”
Kennard called the selection an honor. “On behalf of the board, I want to thank Randall for his outstanding leadership and countless contributions as chairman. We wish him all the best,” said Kennard. “I look forward to working with our CEO and fellow board member John Stankey and the entire board to continue creating long-term value for all stakeholders – investors, customers, employees and the communities we serve.”
Kennard joined AT&T’s board of directors in 2014. He’s on the corporate governance and nominating committee and the public policy and corporate reputation committee. He’s also on the boards of Duke Energy Corporation, Ford Motor Company and MetLife, Inc. Kennard is also co-founder of Astra Capital Management, a private equity firm.
Kennard received his B.A. in Communications from Stanford University and earned his law degree from Yale Law School. He’s on the board of trustees of Yale University.
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