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AT&T's Cynt Marshall: A Leader in 'Leading with Values'

On a stage at UCLA Anderson, Marshall literally brought an audience of 400 to their feet.

Cynthia “Cynt” Marshall, SVP of human resources and chief diversity officer at AT&T / UCLA Anderson

Originally published on The UCLA Anderson Blog

She's spent her 36-year career with AT&T (No. 4 on the DiversityInc Top 50 Companies list), holding the title of SVP of human resources and chief diversity officer since 2015; but it wasn't the telecommunications field or the company, specifically, that ignited Cynthia "Cynt" Marshall's early passion. Marshall's passion is simply what she brings to whatever she does, wherever she goes — to work, to higher education, to her son's swim meet, to surviving colon cancer and, last week, to a stage at UCLA Anderson in front of 400 people she literally brought to their feet.


Introduced by Anderson Women board member and Velocity conference co-chair Sherry Jackman ('10), Marshall gave the audience a post-prandial shot in the arm for the second year in a row. "To say she's back by popular demand is a complete understatement," said Jackman, followed by loud applause. AT&T was the presenting sponsor of Velocity, the UCLA Anderson Women's Leadership Summit, whose theme was Empower Together. An enormous component of the company's generosity was sending Cynt Marshall (and a cheering section of AT&T staff) to represent. Among her prominent colleagues are UCLA Anderson alumni John Stankey ('91), CEO of AT&T Entertainment Group, and Norberta Noguera (Riordan Fellow '95, FEMBA '01), vice president of AT&T's security and advanced applications.

Marshall's fierce company loyalty far exceeds the requirements of her job, though. She has boundless energy and enthusiasm not just for business and corporate leadership, but for general integrity, human cooperation and core values as well. Her unmistakable message to Anderson MBAs — along with the Girls Scouts, high school students, seasoned industry professionals and academics who also crowded into the auditorium — is to bring your values into your professional environment, do not check your personality at the door.

UCLA Anderson

Was she kicked back a time or two for being herself, for being "loud" as she put it? No question. Marshall once prepared a speech that almost got her fired at a time when some in the company leadership weren't ready for frank discussions about the obligation to give everyone a place at the table. But she continued to impose her candor and evangelism. "The worth of our lives comes not in what we do or who we know, but in who we are and what we value," she said. And now AT&T goes beyond mere "tolerance" to privilege true understanding.

So if any aspiring executive ever needed living proof that persisting in believing in the validity of your ideas and your self-worth moves you forward, the ardent Marshall makes a convincing case. Consider these ingredients — Marshall's two Cynts' worth — for success in work and in life:

"Surround yourself by like-minded people, even if they don't look like you." This doesn't mean homogeny, it means you can gain strength from what you find in common with people committed to inclusion.

"Embrace your 'firstness.'" Instead of feeling like a simple token representative of your group, tout your achievement as a milestone of progress for any underrepresented person or group.

"HASU: Hook a sister up." Do you see someone with valid ideas and great skills struggling against gender bias? Speak up for that colleague or friend or stranger.

"Doing something the right way is not the same as doing the right thing."

"MARC: It stands for men advocating for real change." Marshall described effective, supportive white male mentors as unthreatened by difference: "They will help you deliver the goods if they want something good for the company."

"Your integrity is not for sale." Period.

AT&T Awards $25,000 at Pitches with Purpose Event

The winner, MindRight, provides a judgement-free mobile platform that empowers youth of color to heal from systemic oppression by offering support and personalized live coaching via text message.

Originally Published by AT&T.

AT&T launched its inaugural Pitches with Purpose earlier this month in Dallas, with 8 companies from this year's AT&T Aspire Accelerator class competing for $25,000 for their cause.

Participating companies gave a 3-minute pitch to a panel of company executives and employees. In the end, MindRight took the top prize. The company provides a judgement-free mobile platform that empowers youth of color to heal from systemic oppression by offering support and personalized live coaching via text message.

The AT&T Aspire Accelerator funds entrepreneurs creating education solutions with technology. It is part of AT&T's signature philanthropic initiative, Aspire. AT&T launched Aspire in 2008 to provide access to education and training people need to get and keep good jobs.

Now celebrating Aspire's 10th anniversary, AT&T has committed $450 million to programs to help millions of students in all 50 states and around the world since 2008.

AT&T: HACEMOS Drives Diversity in STEM

AT&T's HACEMOS group helps drive Latino diversity in STEM fields with 20th Annual High Technology Day.

Originally Published by AT&T.

School used to be all about the 3 Rs: reading, 'riting, and 'rithmatic. But the future is all about all about STEM – Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math. That's why HACEMOS, AT&T's Hispanic/Latino employee resource group, is introducing students to STEM during their 20th annual High Technology Day on Thursday, Oct. 18.

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AT&T Launches New Advertising Company, Xandr

AT&T Advertising & Analytics is Now Xandr, A New Kind of Advertising Company Harnessing Data, Technology, Premium Content and Distribution.

Originally Published by AT&T.

AT&T* announced the launch of XandrSM, its new advertising company led by CEO Brian Lesser. The announcement was made at the Relevance Conference, Xandr's inaugural conference in Santa Barbara, California.

Xandr encompasses all aspects of the existing AT&T advertising & analytics businesses, including AT&T's advanced TV business, AT&T AdWorks; AT&T's data and analytics business; ATT.net and AppNexus, which will continue to support its US and global customers under the Xandr umbrella.

"Xandr is a name that draws inspiration from AT&T's rich history, including its founder Alexander Graham Bell, while imagining how to innovate and solve new challenges for the future of advertising," said Lesser. "Our purpose is to Make Advertising Matter and to connect people with the brands and content they care about. Throughout AT&T's 142-year history, it has innovated with data and technology, making its customers' lives better. Xandr will bring that spirit of innovation to the advertising industry."

This new kind of advertising company has four key advantages, which include data, premium content, advanced advertising technology and AT&T's distribution to more than 170 million direct-to-consumer relationships across wireless, video and broadband.1

Advancing Advanced TV

To further strengthen its leadership in advanced TV advertising, Xandr has entered into agreements with Altice USA and Frontier Communications to aggregate and sell their national addressable TV advertising inventory. This initial step starts to create the foundation of a national TV marketplace for advertisers and premium content publishers. Xandr will also collaborate with a4, Altice USA's advanced advertising business, to help expand a4's nationwide addressable digital advertising capabilities.

By aggregating this video inventory from multiple multichannel video programming distributors (MVPDs), AT&T's addressable TV offering starts to provide advertisers with a one-stop shop. This allows marketers to reach the audiences they want to connect with most, while improving yield by helping inventory owners compete more effectively.

By combining data with advertising technology, addressable TV allows advertisers to more effectively reach their audiences without the wasted spend associated with traditional, non-targeted TV.

Consumer-Centric Advertising

Xandr's unique differentiator is its commitment to personalization, while considering the human element of advertising and people – not just placements.

To underscore its commitment, Xandr teamed up with Insight Strategy Group and Advertiser Perceptions to conduct surveys and on-the-ground ethnographies in order to understand the dynamics between consumer sentiment and the advertising experience.

These findings formed the basis of the inaugural Xandr Relevancy Report, original research on the state of consumer attention, which found 66 percent of consumers wish advertisements were more relevant to their interests and lifestyle, while 57 percent said ads are not relevant to them.

However, consumers recognized the importance of advertising: 64 percent of those surveyed believe advertising enables independent voices to be heard on the Internet, while 70 percent like when ads go beyond just selling a product.

Additional findings can be found in the Xandr Relevancy Report, including examples of how relevant advertising and data-driven insights can result in better consumer experiences.

AT&T: FirstNet Momentum: More Than 2,500 Public Safety Agencies Subscribed

The FirstNet Network Platform Has Been Reliably Supporting First Responders Battling Wildfires and Other Emergencies Nationwide.

Originally Published by AT&T.

More than 2,500 public safety agencies across the country have joined FirstNet. This is nearly double the number of agencies since the last update in July.

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AT&T: 6 Lessons I Learned Along My Journey to the C-Suite

Reputation is what others think of you. Character is who you are. It's something you own.

Originally Published by Linkedin.com.

By David Huntley, Senior Executive Vice President - Chief Compliance Officer

I had the honor of addressing the incoming class of full-time MBA candidates at SMU, my alma mater. After sharing how the continuous reinvention of my career parallels that of AT&T's, I provided 6 lessons I've learned along the way. At the encouragement of others, I'm sharing them with you. Regardless of your industry, profession, personal background or career aspirations, I hope you find value in them.

#1 Seek out and identify mentors and sponsors – No matter where your career path takes you, you'll always need the assistance of others, whether that's sponsors or mentors. To realize your fullest potential, you must seek out people who can help you throughout your journey. Some will be mentors: people willing to lend advice and help you find your way. Others will be sponsors: people that won't simply mentor you, but advocate on your behalf and champion your efforts. Having both will help you reach the career aspirations you've set for yourself.

#2 Persevere – Never give up. At times, you'll experience what you may see as roadblocks. They're not. They're simply speedbumps that require more introspection to help determine the right path forward. You must have the resolve to persevere. Struggle leads to progress. Just think, what would happen if Steve Jobs had stopped the first time he was fired from his own company. We probably wouldn't have the iPhone and Apple probably wouldn't be the first publicly traded trillion-dollar company. Instead, he persevered, stayed true and reached his goals.

#3 Be flexible and embrace change – Greek philosopher Heraclitus is cited as the source of the saying "change is the only constant in life." Joining AT&T as a junior lawyer almost 25 years ago, I expected to practice corporate law through retirement. That wasn't the case. I've spent roughly half of my AT&T career in the Legal department, the other half in operations. And while I'm not a practicing attorney today, I still lean on my legal background on a daily basis. Bringing a foundation in the law to an operations role has only increased my value. So, if change is constant, you must be able to embrace it. If you can't, you'll limit your career options.

#4 Stay relevant and be proactive – Always be learning. You can't stay relevant if you keep your head down. Identify your strengths and continuously develop them. If you have an interest in something, but lack the knowledge, do the work. Always be learning. Whether that's reading, attending training or going back to school, the only way you'll stay relevant is by knowing the latest trends. If you don't remain relevant, then the tools you possess will dull and your value will fall.

#5 Compete the right way – Who doesn't like competition? Healthy competition makes us better. It's when we compete by cutting corners, cheating or sabotaging others that we lose, even while "winning." Because those that you undercut will always remember. They may forgive you, but they'll never forget. And you never know who you might work with, or work for, in the future.

#6 Exercise humility – Admit that you don't have all the answers. The best leaders surround themselves with the best people, so they know who to go to when they don't know the answers. Every great leader also has great people behind them. No one gets to where they are on their own. The sooner you recognize this, the more effective you'll lead. And, one last thing, boldly recognize the great work of others. Give credit where credit is due. Who doesn't want recognition from time to time. This accomplishes two things. It shows your humility, endearing others to you. And it shows others you value their contributions and they're deserving of praise.

The Wrap Up

The last thing I left the MBA candidates with was the importance of character. You can do all the things I've shared above to help position you for success, but character is key. Reputation is what others think of you. Character is who you are. It's something you own. If you haven't started to really focus on it, you must. And while you do, keep integrity at the center.

After all, how do you want to be remembered?

Montgomery County Transforms 911 Communications With AT&T

AT&T ESInet Boosts 911 Reliability and Enhances Emergency Communications.

Originally Published by AT&T.

Montgomery County is transforming its 911 communications with AT&T* ESInet™. The county recently joined others in the National Capital Region and selected the service from AT&T. The solution gives 911 call takers enhanced tools to speed their responsiveness and boost reliability to those in emergencies.

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AT&T Acquires Full Ownership of Otter Media

Otter Media will be a part of AT&T's WarnerMedia unit and Tony Goncalves, who was appointed Otter CEO earlier this year, will continue to run the company, reporting to WarnerMedia CEO, John Stankey.

Originally Published by AT&T.

AT&T* has acquired The Chernin Group's controlling interest in Otter Media, the joint venture between the two companies. Otter Media, a leading subscription, advertising and content company, comprises wholly-owned subsidiaries Ellation, an online subscription video service provider, with offerings under the Crunchyroll and VRV brands, as well as a full-service digital media company, Fullscreen, and its Rooster Teeth brand. Otter also has ownership stakes in global content studio Gunpowder & Sky, as well as Hello Sunshine, a media company founded by Reese Witherspoon.

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AT&T and RapidDeploy Team Up to Advance Emergency Response Capabilities With Cloud-Based Solutions

Cloud-Based Computer-Aided Dispatch Solution Helps Boost Situational Awareness for Dispatchers and First Responders.

Originally Published by AT&T.

AT&T* and RapidDeploy formed a new relationship that enables AT&T to provide Public Safety Answering Points (PSAPs) access to RapidDeploy's cloud-based Computer-Aided Dispatch (CAD) platform. RapidDeploy is a modern update to the dispatch solutions currently used by PSAPs.

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