The Top 50 Blacks In Corporate America.
WHETHER YOU BELIEVE THE GLASS CEILING IS FINALLY shattered, merely cracked or still firmly in place, there's no denying that African Americans have made great strides up the corporate ladder since this magazine started in 1970. Six black executives--Clifford Alexander Jr. of Dun & Bradstreet; Erroll B. Davis, Jr. of Ailiant Energy Corp.; John W. Thompson of Symantec Corp.: A. Barry Rand of Avis Rent A Car; and Lloyd D. Ward of Maytag Corp.--have finally made it to the CEO's seat. And there are others poised just beneath as chief operating officers and presidents--heir-designates in line to assume the top spot.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics Division of Labor Force Statistics, there were 19 miLLion executives, managers and administrators in the U.S. labor force in 1998. Of that number, 7.2% were black In 1988, only 5.6% of the nation's executives, managers and administrations were African American; by 1991 that number had grown slightly to 5.7%. Clearly, there has been some progress.
BLACK ENTERPRISE has spent the past six months identifying and tracking these executives. We found 50 out of 145 who met the tough criteria we set to be included in this report. The last time this story was done, in February 1993, we found 40 African American men and women in top positions; we called them "America's Most Powerful Black Executives." When this report was first presented in February 1988, it was "America's Hottest Black Managers in Corporate America." While a long time seems to have passed, it takes time for significant movement and progress when analyzing career growth and executive development.
This time, the executives that made our list were culled only from the 1,000 largest publicly traded companies in the U.S. To make the cut, all had to be in senior-level positions, preferably within striking distance of the CEO spot, or running major divisions that have a significant impact on their company's bottom line. We also considered whether these executives have officer or executive committee status, whereby they are key players in determining the path and operations of the organizations they lead. Additionally, we took into account the level and number of individuals reporting to them, along with the size of the company, when making our selections. Of course, compensation was a factor--including base salary and short-term bonuses--with a threshold minimum of $250,000. Finally, and most important, we assessed the function of each individual's position. Previously, only those executives who had revenue-generating or operations responsibility were considered for this list. While that still was a dominant factor, given the changing nature and influence of the business landscape, we analyzed how someone in a staff-function, such as chief information officer or corporate officer with human capital responsibilities, might have a significant impact on the corporate bottom line. All are responsible for managing and controlling revenues and budgets in the billions and/or the people that impact these multibillion-dollar organizations.
In the new business paradigm, more African American executives are moving out of their comfort zones and taking on riskier assignments--whether at their current companies or somewhere else. No longer content with compensation alone as a measure of success, these ambitious, highly self-motivated individuals are seizing opportunities that will yield greater rewards, power and authority.
Will the numbers of African Americans in the executive suite continue to grow? Theoretically, yes, as the number of African Americans in the corporate workplace continues to grow. However, in the evolving corporate culture, African Americans must be risk-takers with strong management skills and technical savvy. Their networks, both formal and informal, will play a critical role in their success.
The 50 At a Glance
Gender Breakdown: 42 men, 8 women
Average Age: 54 (within a range of 42-66)
Education: All but 10 have earned advanced degrees, six have attended historically black institutions and 15 have at least one degree from an Ivy League school.
Industries Represented: 14 work for consumer products companies; 10 work in the financial arena; and nine work for telecommunications, organizations. Other areas: high-tech, automotive, manufacturing and restaurant/food service.
Average Tenure: 16.4 years
Kenneth L. Coleman
Senior Vice President of Global Sales, Service and Marketing Silicon Graphics Inc.
Kenneth L. Coleman has a reputation for transforming high-tech start-ups into thriving enterprises. That talent and focus has placed him among the upper echelon of executives in technology's mecca, Silicon Valley. As senior vice president of global sales, service and marketing for Silicon Graphics Inc. (SGI), Coleman manages an organization of 4,000 employees in 179 offices in 41 countries that generated revenues of $2.7 billion in fiscal year 1999.
While Coleman admits that he's always been interested in computers, he has proven that you don't necessarily need to be a "techie" to succeed in the industry. After earning a B.S. in industrial management from Ohio State University in 1965, he joined the Air Force and did a tour of duty in Vietnam. When he returned, he earned an M.B.A. from Ohio State University, finishing the degree in 1972. He then went to computer giant Hewlett Packard (HP), where he started as a recruiter. Coleman spent the next decade in a succession of management positions, including one in which he played a critical role in developing HP's growing personal computer business.
In 1982, Coleman became vice president of development with Activision Inc., a software start-up that evolved into the first home computer video game company. By 1987, he had joined SGI, a world leader in high-performance computers, as vice president of administration. "I could define what I wanted to do," he maintains. "It allowed me to maximize my skills and interests with the needs of the company." In early 1996, he was tapped to expand the consulting and customer support business, and increased revenues from $500 million to $750 million. Last year, he took over as head of global sales services and marketing, implementing SGI's strategic thrust.
In order to adroitly operate in Silicon Valley--and much of corporate America--Coleman maintains that African Americans need to seize opportunities despite the obstacles. The more blacks become successful in the technology arena, the easier it'll be for others to break in. Asserts Coleman: "We've proven that we can do well when we put our minds to it. We must be willing to take risks."
Clifford L. Alexander Jr.
Chairman and CEO (Interim) Dun & Bradstreet Corp.
Education: A.B., Harvard University; LL.B., Yale University Law School
Responsibilities: Responsible for overseeing operations of global leader in business-to-business credit, marketing and purchasing information, and debt management services.
Previous Experience: A lawyer by training, he began his career in 1951. Alexander, a former U.S. Army Secretary, is also president of Alexander & Associates Inc., a private consulting firm specializing in workforce inclusiveness, founded in 1981.
FYI: Alexander was chairman of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission from 1967 to 1969.
President, Sales and Sales Support, Sprint Business Sprint Corp.
Education: B.S., Cornell University; J.D., Cornell Law School.
Responsibilities: Responsible for all direct and indirect channel sales, including large and small business, national accounts, government and wholesale accounts. Also handles all aspects of infrastructure support.
Previous Experience: Prior to this position, Alves was president and general manager of Wholesale Services, the independent reseller that he transformed from a sales-driven organization to a marketing-oriented team.
Bottom Line: "Analyze the market first, then develop the products customers need."
Senior Vice President of U.S. Operations United Parcel Service
In 1971, Calvin Darden was a newlywed senior in college who worked part-time unloading packages for United Parcel Service, where he was thrilled to be earning twice the minimum wage. Little did he know that he'd stay with the company for 28 years and find himself one of the two senior vice presidents of U.S. operations.
He always remembers being impressed with UPS, where diligent employees could successfully package their careers. "I saw a growing company that was expanding into other states, and people who worked hard and were rewarded," he says.
In his curent position, Darden is responsible for a massive operation: a $12.5 billion in revenues in his half of the country and 150,000 employees. His twofold mission is to ensure that UPS provides first-rate customer service while boosting the bottom line. A member of the corporation's management committee, he is also responsible for the day-to-day oversight of all areas of the company. Despite his heavy schedule, Darden serves on the boards of the National Urban League and the African American Unity Center. He is also a deacon at his church.
After earning his B.S. in business management from Canisius College in Buffalo, New York, he moved up the ranks at UPS, serving in such positions as a district and regional manager, and the company's first corporate strategic quality coordinator. At UPS, minorities make up just under 33% of employees (21% are African Americans). Darden would like to see more racial and gender diversity within management. As a member of the Urban League's Black Executive Exchange Program, he mentors and speaks to students about the importance of commitment and responsibility in the workplace. For instance, he proudly states that he has never missed a day of work in 28 years.
Darden's management philosophy is simple: "You have to get employees to believe in you and then they will do a good job. You must talk strategy and guidelines, but give people the flexibility to use their own minds."
Todd C. Brown
Executive Vice President, Kraft Foods, and President Kraft Foods inc. * Kraft: Food Services Division
Education: B.A., Colgate University, M.A., Columbia University; M.B.A., Wharton Graduate School of Business
Responsibilities: Oversees manufacturing and distribution of all Kraft products to hotels, restaurants, hospitals and schools, supervises conception and implementation of corporate strategy and directs new product development.
Previous Experience: Brown was an assistant product manager for General Foods (now part of Kraft), where he helped develop a wide variety of popular food brands. From 1994 to 1996, he served as vice president and general manager of Kraft's $200 million affiliate, Pollio Dairy Products. Before joining General Foods, he was director of student services at Wharton.
Business Philosophy: "I believe that you must go beyond the product to become one with the customers and understand their business from their perspective."
Wayne A. Budd
Group President, New England Bell Atlantic
Education: A.B., Boston College; J.D., Wayne State University School of Law
Responsibilities: Oversees the company's capital investments and operational initiatives affecting service quality in New England. Budd is also responsible for the company's regulatory, legislative and governmental affairs, which have operating revenues of more than $4.8 billion.
Previous Experience: Prior to joining Bell Atlantic in 1996, Budd was a senior partner at Goodwin, Procter & Hoar, a Boston law firm. He has also held a number of high-profile positions in federal and state government over the course of his career. Most recently, he completed a term on the U.S. Sentencing Commission, to which he was appointed by President Bill Clinton in 1994.
Business Philosophy: "Respect your customers, treat them fairly and provide them with an excellent product or service in a reliable fashion."
Name: Franklin D. Raines
Chairman and CEO Fannie Mae
Education: B.A., Harvard University; J.D., Harvard Law School; Rhodes Scholar, Magdalen College, Oxford University
Responsibilities: Oversees all areas of Fannie Mae, a New York Stock Exchange company and the largest non-bank financial services company in the world.
Previous experience: Raines was vice chairman at the company formerly known as the Federal National Mortgage Association before leaving to accept the position of director for the White House Office of Management and Budget. He returned to the company to assume his current title in January 1999.
FYI: A Rhodes Scholar, gaines attended Magdalen College, Oxford University in England.
Virgis W. Colbert
Executive Vice President Miller Brewing Co.
Education: B.S., Central Michigan University
Responsibilities: Oversees 7,000 employees in the multibillion-dollar plant operation, including brewing, research and quality assurance, engineering, purchasing, corporate operations planning and improvement and information systems.
Previous Experience: As vice president of plant operations, Colbert was responsible for 17 brewing, bottling and processing facilities which produce 44 million barrels of beer a year.
Business Philosophy: "I don't micromanage my workers. I lead by example, empower them to make decisions and stress the impact of what they're doing in relation to the bottom line."
Kenneth I. Chenault
President and COO American Express Co.
Education: B.A., Bowdoin College; J.D., Harvard Law School
Responsibilities: Responsible for all the company's business units with primary focus on implementing strategy to achieve growth objectives within and across divisions. He will assume the helm of the company as chief executive officer in 2001.
Previous Experience: Since joining the company in 1981, Chenault has served in a variety of positions, from director of strategic planning in the Merchandise Services division to president of the Consumer Card division.
Business Philosophy: "When you're running a successful business, you tend to stay with the existing formula. But you can't stand still and say the objective is to survive in the long-term. You have to say that the objective is to win."
Debra Stewart Coleman
President, CEO and COO, AutoAlliance International Ford Motor Co., Mazda Motor Corp.
Education: B.A., Southern Illinois University; M.A., Washington University; M.B.A. candidate, Baker College
Responsibilities: Oversees the 50-50 joint manufacturing venture owned by the two auto organizations. She is responsible for the approximately 3,100 employees who produce the Mazda 626 and the Mercury Cougar. Revenues reached $2.8 billion in 1998. She reports to Henry Wallace, group vice president and chief financial officer of Ford.
Previous Experience: Prior to her September 1999 appointment, she was Ford's quality director, Vehicle Operations, where she initiated the global integration of quality systems, procedures and processes. Coleman joined Ford in 1987 as an area manager, and progressed to plant manager of the Ohio assembly plant.
FYI: Coleman is an avid cook with a flair for seafood and pasta dishes.
Michael A. Dennis
Vice President, Business Cornunications Systems Lucent Technologies
Education: B.S., Dartmouth College; completed Executive Education Programs at Darden School of Business, University of Virginia, and the Haas Business School, University of California, Berkeley
Responsibilities: Manages the 13,000-person unit that provides installation, maintenance, customer support and business management services to Lucent's business customers.
Previous Experience: Most recently, Dennis was vice president, BCS' Field Services, and led the largest U.S. direct force of technicians and engineers in the communications industry. He began his career in 1981 at AT&T as a staff assistant. He joined Lucent in 1993 as a general manager of BCS' Sales and Services division.
Service With a Smile: Dennis serves on the board of directors of INROADS of Central New Jersey
Erroll B. Davis Jr.
President and CEO Alliant Energy
To hear observers tell it, Erroll B. Davis Jr. emits as much energy as the power plants he oversees. As president and CEO of Alliant Energy, the $6 billion utility corporation based in Madison, Wisconsin, the 55-year-old exec has to keep a ready supply. He manages 6,000 employees worldwide, controls $2.13 billion in revenue and caters to more than 1 million electric, natural gas and water customers.
It was Davis who orchestrated a complex 29-month-long merger of Interstate Power, IES Industries and the parent company of Wisconsin Power & Light, WPL Holdings, the company where Davis served as president and CEO. Davis' 20-year track record at WPL made him the natural choice to head up Alliant.
Once an aspiring scientist, Davis holds a bachelor of science degree in electrical engineering from Carnegie Mellon and an M.B.A. from the University of Chicago. Over the years, he has developed a strong reputation for conducting business in an honest and ethical manner. "In many ways, corporate executives represent America's royalty, so I understand how some people in positions get seduced by the power and money," says Davis. "But you can't forget that you have a job to do and that your shareholders expect you to do it right."
He has also scored high points for being an effective team builder. "You can't achieve anything [in business] without the help of those around you," says the avid tennis player and golfer. To show his appreciation, he sends handwritten notes to his employees, recognizing their accomplishments, and stays in touch regularly via the telephone and informational meetings.
His gems of career advice: "Do your job well and learn how to get along with people in a team-based environment."
Edward C. Dolby
President, Bank of America Carolinas Bank of America
Education: B.A., Shaw University
Responsibilities: The highest-ranking African American line manager at Bank of America, the nation's largest bank with $614 billion in assets, Dolby oversees all Commercial and Consumer, Small Business, Professional and Executive, Newcomer and Relocation banking, as well as Treasury Management for the Carolinas franchise.
Previous Experience: He joined the company in 1970 as a credit analyst. Dolby was named vice president in 1976, and held a string of management positions before being named executive vice president in 1992, and Carolinas Consumer Bank executive in 1996.
FYI: Dolby spent two years in the Peace Corps from 1966 to 1968.
Arnold W. Donald
President, Nutrition and Consumer Sector Monsanto
Education: B.S., Washington University; M.B.A., University of Chicago Graduate School of Business
Responsibilities: Sole executive responsible for Monsanto's $8 billion nutrition and consumer sector, whose products include NutraSweet and the Roundup Lawn & Garden family of herbicides. A member of the Life Sciences Business Team, which finds solutions for global food and health issues, Donald oversees a staff of 20,000 employees worldwide.
Previous Experience: Donald began his career with Monsanto as a senior market analyst. He rose through the ranks to head up its Lawn and Garden business, where he increased the unit's revenues fivefold, from $40 million to $200 million in retail dollars. Several executive promotions later, he was named group vice president for North America.
Business Philosophy: "Aim to fulfill the company's mission, know your customers' needs, bring in diverse and talented people and deliver results."
Corporate Vice President and COO Professional Division Eastman Kodak,
Lance Drummond can focus as sharply as any camera lens. It has been this attribute that has enabled him to build Eastman Kodak's professional division into a $2 billion powerhouse.
To achieve this goal, the corporate vice president and unit's chief operating officer has drawn on his strong West Indian roots. The son of Jamaican immigrants, Drummond, 45, understood early on the importance of sacrifice. "My parents left everything behind in Jamaica so my two sisters and I could have a better shot at having a college education," he explains. "Recognizing what they had sacrificed, I knew then that I had to be successful."
His ability to focus has served him well since he joined Kodak in his early 20s. The graduate of Boston University steadily rose through the ranks, holding such positions as general manager, U.S. and Canada sales and marketing, for the dental products business of health imaging in 1990. In 1991, he was general manager and vice president of the dental products business. In 1994, he received a Sloan Fellowship, which led him to, pursue a master's degree in industrial management at MIT.
Today, Drummond oversees Kodak's professional division, which handles professional photography products for commercial photo labs, digital media products, scanning technologies, image manufacturing and e-commerce activities. Moreover, he manages two of four internal businesses within the division--portrait/social and special products--as well as businesses in the U.S., Canada and Latin America.
But Drummond isn't all work and no play. An avid golfer, when he isn't on the links, he devotes time to his wife of nearly 20 years and their two children. Although he lacked African American role models within the company at the start of his career, he offers advice to the next generation of black executives: (1) seek out those who can mentor and guide you; (2) don't be afraid to fail--be a risk taker and (3) have fun in your chosen career path.
Ann M. Fudge
Executive Vice President Kraft Foods Inc.
Education: B.A., Simmons College; M.B.A., Harvard University Graduate School of Business
Responsibilities: Oversees the manufacturing, promotion and sales of all coffee and cereal brands; also responsible for marketing, distribution and sales of Starbucks coffee in grocery stores.
Previous Experience: Fudge's 20-year marketing career, which has yielded tremendous financial results for Kraft, began at General Mills, where she went from a marketing assistant to marketing director.
FYI: This former Executive Leadership Council president was named Advertising Woman of the Year and Glamour magazine's Woman of the Year in 1995.
Emerson U. Fullwood
Corporate Vice President and President, Worldwide Customer Services Group, Industry Solutions Operations, Xerox
Education: B.A., North Carolina State University, M.B.A., Columbia University Business School
Responsibilities: Oversees 20,000 employees in the U.S., Canada and Europe. Fullwood is responsible for customer services, service revenue and retention, the consumables supplies business, customer services marketing and customer satisfaction and loyalty for ISO.
Previous Experience: He joined the copier maker in 1972 as an account representative. He has held a variety of marketing and sales management positions, including vice president and national sales manager, and, most recently, senior vice president of customer satisfaction and services for Xerox Corp.'s United States Customer Operations.
Business Philosophy: "In today's global marketplace, customers judge us by new standards. They measure their satisfaction in terms of their total expeirence. Customer satisfaction is the bottom line for success."
A. Barry Rand
Chairman and CEO Avis Rent A Car
Education: B.A., American University; M.B.A., Stanford University
Responsibilities: Oversees the $4 billion rental car fleet, directs strategic operations of the company and supervises the management of newly acquired PHH/Wright Express, a U.S.-British vehicle management and fuel credit card company.
Previous Experience: Best known as the award-winning executive vice president of Xerox Corp., where he spent 30 years of his career. Rand held numerous sales, marketing and management positions during his tenure, including president of the U.S. Marketing Group.
FYI: When Rand tore an Achilles tendon in 1993, he had to temporarily give up his two favorite forms of exercise: Nautilus training and basketball,
Group President, Enterprise Business Unit: Belt Atlantic
Education: B.A., Gettysburg College; M.S., Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Responsibilities: Responsible for all of the Enterprise Business Unit's activities, including, Enterprise Customer Services Delivery, Federal Systems, the Data Solutions Group, the Telecom Systems Group, as well as marketing and sales for the entire division.
Previous Experience: Gordon joined Bell of Pennsylvania in 1968 as a management trainee and went on to hold various positions, including vice president of sales of Bell Atlantic Corp. and group president for retail services, where he spearheaded the $26 billion merger of Bell Atlantic and NYNEX in 1997.
FYI: A wide receiver in college, Gordon took his first job at Bell Atlantic--his sole employer--because it "offered the most money." He had originally planned "to stay a few years and then move on."
Executive Vice President and Managing Director Chubb & Son
Education: B.A., Mount Union College; Advanced Management Program, Harvard University
Responsibilities: Oversees Chubb's U.S. field operations, which include 56 branch offices representing approximately $4.6 billion in property and casualty written premium insurance.
Previous Experience: Green signed on to the organization in 1964 as a management trainee. He was named managing director in 1990. Most recently, he was responsible for the company's Eastern Zone office.
Business Philosophy: "You've got to carve your own landscape and be able to build, by consensus, a community that believes in you as much as you believe in yourself."
Elliot S. Hall
Vice President, Dealer Development Ford Motor Co.
Education: B.A., Wayne State University; J.D., Wayne State University School of Law
Responsibilities: Hall is responsible for overseeing its dealer development program, which includes enhancing the focus on minority dealer operations, strengthening relationships within Ford's minority dealership network.
Previous Experience: Previously, Hall was vice president of Civic and External Affairs. Before joining Ford, he was a partner in the Detroit law firm of Dykema, Gosset, and served as chief assistant prosecutor for Wayne County, Michigan.
Service With a Smile: A former lawyer for the Chrysler Corp., Hall is chairman of the board of the Washington Performing Arts Society. He also sits on the board of the Shakespeare Theatre in Washington, D.C.
John E. Jacob
Executive Vice President Anheuser-Busch Companies, Inc.
Education: B.A., Howard University; M.S.W., Howard University
Responsibilities: Involved in planning strategic objectives for the $13 billion global corporation that includes the world's largest brewing organization (Budweiser), and one the largest theme park operations (Busch Gardens) in the world.
Previous Experience: Jacob, who began his career as a social worker in 1960, was president and CEO of the National Urban League from 1982 to 1994.
FYI: Jacob, who was a U.S. Army Reserve captain from 1957 to 1965, earned an Airborne Parachutist Badge in 1958.
Brenda J. Gaines
North American President, Diners Club international Citigroup
In the competitive world of travel and consumer credit cards, "the Citi" (as in Citigroup) never sleeps. Under the watchful eye of Brenda J. Gaines, neither does its global charge card division. As North American president of Diners Club International, the $30 billion subsidiary of Citigroup, Gaines runs a powerhouse unit with more than a million cards in circulation and a staff of 900 employees.
Gaines started her career on the government track with no thought of the corporate world, much less controlling one of its prestige brands. "I never envisioned myself being where I am now," says the former deputy general administrator for the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
In 1983, a job search landed her the position of Chicago's commissioner of housing under Mayor Harold Washington's administration. She later became deputy chief of staff, a post she held through 1987. "I became very involved with the corporate community in Chicago, and [developed] the skills [that recruiters look] for in corporate America, such as the ability to develop, implement and manage strategic plans." After Washington's untimely death, Gaines joined Citibank in 1988 and never looked back.
The 11-year veteran is now charged with achieving profitable growth and building brand loyalty. To do so, she caters to the ever-changing needs of Diners Club's individual and corporate consumers. "People are doing business differently when they travel now than even five years ago," says Gaines, who joined Diners Club in 1992. "[But] clearly, we are customer driven and [do] what we must to meet their needs."
Named one of the most influential women in travel by Travel Weekly magazine in 1998, Gaines pushes her staff to strive for professional excellence. "I try to give them the opportunity to excel," she says. "It's important to coach people and recognize and reward their success."
George R. Lewis
President and CEO Philip Morris Capital Corp.
Education: B.S., Hampton University; M.B.A., Iona College
Responsibilities: Responsible for overseeing investments in leveraged and direct finance leases and structured financing transactions on a worldwide basis.
Previous Experience: Lewis began his career as a product analyst with General Foods Corp. in 1963 and later joined W.R. Grace as a financial analyst in 1966. He came to Philip Morris as a corporate analyst in 1967, where he was promoted seven times before being named to his current position.
FYI: Lewis once served on the board of directors for the Professional Golfers' Association of America.
Raymond C. Mines
Executive Vice President-Franchise Relations McDonald's Corp.
Education: Degree in traffic transportation management, Academy of Advanced Traffic & Transportation
Responsibilities: Works with McDonald's USA's five division presidents to maintain a focus on the needs and concerns of restaurant franchisees, who account for 80% of all units in the $12.4 billion organization.
Previous Experience: Mines climbed the fast-food chain's ladder from a restaurant manager in 1975 to regional vice president in 1986 to vice president and zone manager in 1991.
Service With a Smile: Mines serves on the board of directors of Children's Memorial Hospital and the Chicago Urban League.
Mirian M. Graddick
Executive Vice President of Human Resources AT&T
Mirian M. Graddick's "passion for the people side of business" has earned her a place as the only woman on AT&T's senior leadership team, the body responsible for the telecommunication giant's strategy and direction.
Named executive vice president of human resources last March, Graddick, 45, is charged with the design, planning and administration of programs for more than 150,000 employees in the U.S. and around the world. She reports to Chairman and CEO C. Michael Armstrong.
Graddick began her affiliation with AT&T after graduating from Hampton University. She worked as an intern for two consecutive summers in Bell Laboratories' research group, which motivated the aspiring clinical psychologist to pursue a business career. After winning a Bell Labs scholarship for women and minorities, she pursued an advanced degree, eventually completing her doctoral studies at Penn State in industrial/organizational psychology. Graddick joined AT&T in the early 1980s and moved up the ranks, holding a variety of management positions in human resources.
As part of the dynamic and volatile telecommunications industry, Graddick credits much of her success to being able to quickly embrace change. Says she: "You must be willing to learn new things and have the ability to get out of your comfort zone and enhance yourself professionally."
Indeed, Graddick, who grew up in a military family that moved constantly, seems to thrive on change. In fact, moving out of human resources for a few years and serving as special assistant to the company's vice chairman and then director of consumer communications services were key career moves that strengthened Graddick's skill base and position. "I was able to step out of my comfort zone and lead a team of 2,000 people who interfaced with customers," she says. "I was quite proud of that. It was an opportunity for me to stretch myself professionally and make a contribution to the company."
Graddick advises aspiring executives to learn from their mistakes and move on to the next project. "I tell the people I coach that at the end of the day, you're judged not by what happens in a particular situation, but how you react to that situation and how you apply what you learn."
Stacey J. Mobley
Senior Vice President, Chief Administrative Officer DuPont Foundation
Education: B.S., Howard University School of Pharmacy; J.D., Howard University School of Law
Responsibilities: Mobley has senior management responsibility for staff services, including legal, safety, health and environmental affairs, governmental and public affairs, and company operations in the Americas region. He has responsibility for the strategic direction of all of the $27 billion company's businesses.
Previous Experience: He joined DuPont's legal department in 1972, and received several promotions before being named vice president of communications in external affairs and senior vice president in 1992.
FYI: Mobley is also a registered pharmacist.
Executive Vice President and CFO Merill Lynch
Education: B.S., Kettering University (formerly General Motors Institute); M.B.A., Harvard University
Responsibilities: Oversees financial management activities on a worldwide basis. He is also responsible for global risk and credit management as well as corporate services, which includes management of the firm's worldwide real estate and purchasing activities.
Previous Experience: Prior to joining Merrill Lynch in 1986, O'Neal was with General Motors Corp. in New York and Madrid and held various treasury-related positions from 1978 to 1986.
Business Philosophy: "Being prepared to seize opportunities when they present themselves is the essence of business."
John W. Thompson
Chairman, President and CEO Symantec Corp.
Education: B.S., Florida A&M University: M.S., Sloan School of Management, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Responsibilities: Oversees the $633.8 million company, The worldwide leader in personal computer utilities, it is the maker of computer security and anti-virus software, such as Norton Utilities. His plans for growing the company include pushing network security and mobile computing products, as welt as improving sales efforts.
Previous Experience: Prior to joining Symantec, Thompson spent 28 years at IBM Corp. In his most recent position as general manager of IBM America, he was responsible for sales a nd support: of IBM's technology products and services, generating $37 billion in revenues,
FYI: Listed by Time magazine as one of the 50 most influential people in technology, Thompson's net worth is estimated at $3.5 million.
Vicki Roman Palmer
Vice President and Treasurer Coca-Cola Enterprises * Coca-Cola Co.
Education: B.A., Rhodes College; M.B.A., University of Memphis.
Responsibilities: Manages the company's $11 billion multicurrency debt portfolio; its $3 billion pension plan and 401(k) plan investments; and has responsibility for currency and global cash management, as well as commercial and investment banking relationships.
Previous Experience: Before joining Coca-Cola Co. in 1983 as manager of worldwide pension investments, Palmer spent five years at Federal Express as the company's first black woman manager.
Secret of Success: "I'm a perfectionist and expect nothing less than the best."
Richard D. Parsons
President and COO Time Warner Inc.
Education: Graduate of the University of Hawaii and Union University's Albany Law School.
Responsibilities: Examines and defines Time Warner's vision and values. Oversees corporate staff functions, corporate financial activities, legal affairs, corporate public affairs and administration. Most important, he is the only executive responsible for managing the relationships among the company's divisions and is the company's chief negotiator and deal maker.
Previous Experience: The former attorney-partner for the New York law firm of Patterson, Belknap Webb and Tyler, Parsons went on to become counsel for Nelson A. Rockefeller and former President Gerald Ford. He was named chief executive officer of Dime Savings Bank in 1988.
FYI: Parsons skipped two elementary school grades to enter the University of Hawaii at age 16.
Randall D. Price
Executive Vice President, Advanced Materials Corning Inc.
Education: B.S. and M.B.A., Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Responsibilities: Oversees the division that provides products such as automotive and lighting systems and heat-resistant glass for NASA's space shuttles. Corning is a $5 billion company with 15,400 employees worldwide.
Previous Experience: Has served Corning for nearly 23 years in various sales, marketing, new product development and business management positions. Served as marketing manager for Latin America and Asia Pacific export products. Appointed business manager for the advanced products and materials division in 1991 and division vice president in 1994.
Service With a Smile: Price sits on the board of the Thurgood Marshall Scholarship Fund and the Hartford Symphony Orchestra.
Chairman and CEO, Elektra Entertainment Group Time Warner Inc.
Education: B.S., Wharton School of Business, University of Pennsylvania
Responsibilities: Runs the $5 billion global music subsidiary of Time Warner. Rhone has turned Elektra, a division of the Warner Music Group, into one of the its most profitable labels, with sales nearing the $500 million mark.
Previous Experience: Rhone began her career in 1974 at Buddha Records and rose through the ranks of labels such as ABC and Atlantic Records, holding various positions in marketing and promotions. In 1990, she launched EastWest Records and became its president and CEO.
Secret of Success: "I know how to manage a company financially and combine it with solid relationships with creative people. I don't think any business will cause me to lose sight of myself, because that's where I get my inner strength."
Ira D. Hall
Ira D. Hall holds the purse strings of an oil giant in transition. Texaco currently operates in an industry in the throes of merger mania. And the company is still engaged in damage control after being outed for a series of controversial discriminatory acts in the late `90s. In fact, it has appointed four key African American executives over the past year.
One of them was the brilliant money manager Ira D. Hall, who made the jump from IBM in June 1998 to Texaco as general manager of alliance management. "I had in-depth conversations with the leaders of the company about their philosophy and how they wanted to run the business," says Hall about his move to the image-tarnished company. "I was convinced they were people of goodwill who were serious about creating a world-class, diverse workforce."
As general manager, Hall helped set up the day-to-day management procedures for the company's refineries and service stations worldwide. More than a year later, he was invited to have dinner with the company's board of directors. Within two days, he was named treasurer, with responsibility for a 60-person department that runs the company's financing and paper operations, manages $7 billion in outstanding debt and oversees Texaco's pension fund.
Hall's role has become more critical as the oil industry is being restructured through mergers and acquisitions. Texaco has developed significant joint ventures with Shell, Chevron and Saudi Refining. "We are not a small company, but our larger competitors just got bigger," asserts Hall, "and hopefully we can be more nimble [and] react to opportunities both with companies our size and larger."
Among Hall's proudest achievements is his ability to lead a balanced life of family, career and community. His advice to budding execs: I've always pursued personal excellence. Aim high and manage your own career. Don't rely on your company to do it for you."
Vice President and Group Executive, North American Vehicle Sales, Service and Marketing General Motors
Education: B.A., Western Michigan University; Executive Development Program, Harvard Graduate School of Business
Responsibilities: Oversees all facets of vehicle sales, service and parts distribution in the United States.
Previous Experience: Roberts joined GM in 1977 as a trainee, working his way up to a plant manager's position four years later. Over the next several years, he held a number of management roles before being named general manager of GMC-Pontiac, GM's second largest division, in 1996.
Business Philosophy: "I'm not the kind of manager who maintains the status quo. Everyday I come to work and think very seriously about how I can make things better. If I can't, what's the point?"
Ray M. Robinson
President, Southern Region AT&T
Education: B.S., University of Denver; M.B.A., University of Denver
Responsibilities: Robinson oversees marketing sales and promotions of AT&T's Consumer Long Distance Services for nine states, including Florida, Georgia, the Carolinas and Louisiana. It represents approximately $5.8 billion in annualized revenue.
Previous Experience: He joined AT&T in 1968 as a communications technician, installing long distance circuits. Since then, he has held numerous management positions--including president and chief executive officer of AT&T Tridom--in marketing, sales, operations, corporate relations and regulatory affairs.
FYI: Over the course of his 32-year career with the company, Robinson has relocated 11 times.
Thomas W. Jones
Chairman and CEO Global Investment Management and Private Banking Group * Citigroup
The job title is a mouthful, but then so is the job. As chairman and CEO of the Global Investment Management and Private Banking Group, Thomas W. Jones oversees many billions of dollars in worldwide assets.
He runs a newly formed business unit that includes SSB Citi Asset Management Group, Citibank Private Bank and Citibank Retirement Plan Services. Appointed in August 1999, Jones, 50, controls three primary asset management business platforms: Salomon Brothers Asset Management, Smith Barney Asset Management and Citibank Global Asset Management. SSB Citi Asset Management had more than $351 billion in aggregate assets under management as of last September.
Jones has impeccable credentials. He joined Travelers Group as vice chairman and director in 1997, and served as chairman and CEO of Salomon Smith Barney Asset Management until October 1998. Prior to joining Travelers, he was vice chairman and director of TIAA-CREF for two years. "The biggest difference between TIAA-CREF and SSB Citi is that this is a global, multiline, multichannel operation," he says. "We have businesses in the U.S., Europe, Japan, Asia, Latin American and Australia, among others. TIAA-CREF is a dominant niche player, but all its business is domestic."
The secret to Jones' corporate success is relatively simple: hard work and dedication--every day. "The most important lesson I've learned is that you have to have the ability to give 100% effort and sustain it. Most people think that operating at [their] 95% level is giving an `A' effort. That's the level that most very good people operate at," says Jones. "But just think what a difference that extra 5% could make. It builds upon itself. Learn how to give everything you have to give."
Chairman, Alliance Capital Management Int'l, and Director, Alliance Capital Management L.P. Alliance Capital Management L.P.
Education: B.A., Howard University; M.A., Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies
Responsibilities: Oversees overall direction of international operations, including international marketing and business development activities of the firm.
Previous Experience: Savage originally joined Equitable Life in 1970 as president of Equico Capital Corp., the largest MESBIC in the country. Returning after a two-year departure in 1975, he held various management positions before being named chairman of Equitable Capital in 1992, a year before it merged with Alliance Capital.
FYI: He is also founder and chairman of Nile Growth Company, which invests in Egyptian securities.
Paula A. Sneed
Executive Vice President and President E-Commerce Division * Kraft Foods Inc.
Education: B.A., Simmons College; M.B.A., Harvard University
Responsibilities: Sneed's leadership helps the food giant's 70 major national brands--four of which earn more than $1 billion in annual revenues and 27 more of which bring in $100 million a year--reach consumers and customers through the rapidly emerging field of e-commerce.
Previous Experience: Most recently, she was chief marketing officer, where she oversaw all of Kraft's marketing, which resulted in $1.5 billion in revenue.
Secret of Success: "I knew what I wanted from my career. Without a grand plan, you're selling yourself short."
William R. Spivey
Group President, Network Products Group Lucent Technologies
Education: B.S., M.S., Ph.D., Walden University
Responsibilities: Oversees the development, manufacturing and marketing of Lucent's fiber optic, copper cabling and power systems. With 15,000 employees in 14 countries and an operating budget of $3.5 billion, Spivey's group produced $4 billion in revenue in 1998-15% of the company's overall take.
Previous Experience: Spivey began his career at General Electric as an electrical engineer. He subsequently lent his technical talents in senior management positions at various companies such as Honeywell, Tektronix and AT&T. He joined Lucent and was named to his current post in 1997.
FYI: Dr. Spivey is the author of two management books, Succeeding in Corporate America (Vantage Press, 1991) and Corporate America in Black and White (Carlton Press, 1992).
Hansel E. Tookes
President and CEO Raytheon Aircraft Co.
Education: B.S., Florida State University; M.S., University of West Florida; Advanced Management Program, Harvard University
Responsibilities: Oversees the day-to-day operations of the $2.6 billion company that designs, manufactures, markets and supports jet, turboprop and piston-powered aircraft for the world's commercial, military and regional airline markets.
Previous Experience: Tookes joined United Technologies Corp. in 1980, where he worked his way up to executive vice president of aircraft products and to vice president of business planning. From 1996 until September 1999, when he took his position at Raytheon, he was president of Pratt & Whitney's Large Military Engines group in West Palm Beach, Florida.
FYI: Tookes was a naval aviator flying PC-3 Orions, and was a pilot for United Airlines.
Lloyd G. Trotter
President and CEO, G.E. Industrial Systems General Electric
Education: B.B.A., Cleveland State University
Responsibilities: Oversees the $5 billion global business, which is a result of a merger of the company's Electrical Distribution and Control and Industrial Control Systems businesses. Trotter is responsible for around 40,000 employees in 100 major manufacturing facilities and 300 sales and service offices worldwide.
Previous Experience: Trotter has spent his entire career at the company that Edison built. He has risen from a field service engineer for G.E. Lighting in 1970 to president and CEO of Electrical Distribution and Control in 1992. He was a senior vice president of the company in 1998.
Business Philosophy: "No matter how much you invest in a company, if you don't have a vision and the ability to get your people to rally around it, you won't be successful."
Senior Vice President and President, Africa Group Coca-Cola Co.
Education: B.A, Clark College; attended Carnegie Mellon University; M.P.A., University of Pittsburgh
Responsibilities: Has operational responsibility for worldwide sales in sub-Saharan Africa.
Previous Experience: Ware was deputy director of urban development for the Atlanta Housing Authority before joining Coke as an urban and governmental affairs specialist in 1974. Four years later, he was named vice president of special markets for Coca-Cola USA. He held one other position before being appointed senior vice president in 1986.
Community Contribution: In 1990, Ware chaired the Metropolitan United Way campaign, which raised over $51 million for disadvantaged families in Atlanta.
Executive Vice President of Operations and New Business Tricon Global Restaurants
When Aylwin Lewis took the summer off from grad school at the University of Washington in Seattle, the Houston native did not know that a desire to earn extra money would lead to a career in the fast-food industry, let alone the No. 3 spot in the largest restaurant company in the world. Some 22 years later, Lewis has gone from being assistant manager at one Houston-based Jack-in-the-Box to running 29,800 restaurants worldwide for Tricon Global Restaurants Inc., whose chains include Taco Bell, KFC and Pizza Hut, each the No. 1 brand in its food category.
After becoming a district manager with Jack-in-the-Box and then managing 40 of its Los Angeles stores, Lewis was lured away by Pepsico in 1984 to be regional operations manager for a soup-and-salad chain start-up. When the division was sold, Lewis declined an offer to stay with the franchise. In 1987, he was back at Jack-in-the-Box as a regional vice president with 100 stores, valued at $100 million, under his command. In that position, he propelled profits in his area stores from -0.4% to 120% over the next six years. In 1993, Pepsico offered Lewis the position of regional general manager for KFC, which was followed by a series of promotions from senior director of franchising to senior vice president of operations development and marketing. In 1997, after Pepsico spun off its Tricon Restaurants division, Lewis was promoted to COO for Pizza Hut. In this position, he once again turned around a sluggish but well-known brand, producing nine consecutive quarters of positive growth that were aided by his innovative "Operation Boot Camp" strategy, which ensures that employee training is consistent among all 4,000 restaurants. The U.S. Pizza Hut unit grossed $4.8 billion of the corporation's $20.6 billion in sales in 1998. Gaining a 22% share of the market, Lewis was rewarded with a promotion to executive vice president of operations and new business for all Tricon Restaurants.
Along the way, Lewis also found time to return to his educational goals: he received a master's degree in human resource management from Houston Baptist University and an M.B.A from the University of Houston, his alma mater. An avid reader who has traveled abroad to almost 50 countries with his wife, Lewis believes in staying hungry and humble, "so the trappings of the job don't go to your head. I come from the Walter Payton school of achievement. I think you do the job until it gets done and let the work speak for itself."
President, SBC Business Communications Services SBC Communications
Education: B.A., University of Texas; management program, University of Pittsburgh
Responsibilities: Oversees all aspects of sales and marketing to nearly 3 million businesss customers.
Previous Experience: His most recent position was president and CEO of Southwestern Bell Telephone. He began his career at the company in 1974 as a commercial assistant.
FYI: For three years running, beginning in 1995, the Kansas City press named Wilkins as one of the 100 most influential African Americans.
Christopher C. Womack
Senior Vice President and "Chief People Officer" Southern Co.
Education: B.S., Western Michigan University; M.P.A., American University; Executive Accounting and Finance Program, Wharton School of Business, University of Pennsylvania
Responsibilities: Directs company's leadership, staffing, compensation and benefits and organizational effectiveness functions. Also oversees Southern Co. College, the employee training organization.
Previous Experience: Most recently, Womack was senior vice president at Alabama Power, with responsibility for public relations, corporate services and corporate real estate.
FYI: He served as a legislative aide to U.S. Representative Leon E. Panetta from 1979 to 1987 and staff director for the House Subcommittee on Personnel and Police.
Keith H. Williamson
President, Capital Services Division Pitney Bowes Financial Services
What's the difference between a good job and a great career? "A strong educational foundation," says Keith H. Williamson. He should know.
As president of the capital services division of Pitney Bowes Financial Services (PBFS), a $168 million business unit of the $4.5 billion postage-meter manufacturer Pitney Bowes Inc., Williamson understands that universal advice. It impelled him to get a B.A. from Brown, and a J.D. and M.B.A. from Harvard. Indeed, education has served him well over his 12-year career with PBFS.
Williamson oversees the division that finances expenditures for all capital equipment, including rail and trucking equipment as well as furniture and fixtures. Additionally, Williamson, who also holds a L.L.M. in taxation from New York University Law School, manages the tax and legal functions that support his eight reports and a staff of 91. "We're like the Marines," he says about his crew. "We're small [in number], but elite." Williamson reports directly to Michael J. Critelli, Pitney Bowes' chairman and CEO.
The St. Louis native joined PBFS as director of taxes in 1988 after being sold on the company's commitment to providing advancement opportunities for people of color. (The company won a National Urban League award in 1950 for its diversity policies.) As senior associate general counsel of mergers and acquisitions--one decade and several promotions later--Williamson was the driving force behind the $800 million sale of a division to G.E. Capital in 1998. His sound business judgment and extensive legal and tax knowledge in such projects led to his February 1999 appointment and a seat on the corporation's executive leadership council.
A self-described bookworm whose favorite read is Kurt Vonnegut's satirical science-fiction classic Slaughterhouse-Five, Williamson believes that relationship-building is key in modern business. "We live in a world that's getting faster every day, and it's harder for companies to do everything on their own," says the husband and father of a five-year-old daughter. "Knowing how to make connections with others to maneuver into new areas will be critical to the success of my company--and my career." Spoken like a true business scholar.
Elease E. Wright
Senior Vice President, Human Resources Aetna U.S. Healthcare
Education: B.S., University of Connecticut
Responsibilities: Leads the design, development and introduction of Aetna's HR services, consulting, products and processes. She is responsible for a staff of 200 HR professionals nationwide, who implement the strategies that affect the company's 28,000 employees.
Previous Experience: After a-six year-stint with the state of Connecticut, Wright joined Aetna as a senior instructor of employee benefits in 1982. She rose through the HR ranks to become vice president of corporate human resources in 1994 and a vice president of Aetna in 1996.
Service With a Smile: Wright serves on the board of Connecticut Children's Medical Center and is co-president of the Greater Hartford YWCA Board of Directors.
General Manager, Networking Computing Software Division International Business Machines
Education: B.A. and M.A., University of San Diego
Responsibilities: Leads IBM's push to design, develop and deliver secure e-business platforms for servers, desktop, handheld devices, pagers and cellular phones. His division employs 2,200 people and brought in $1.1 billion last year.
Previous Experience: Zollar joined IBM in 1977 as a system engineer trainee, and has held leadership positions across IBM's software development locations. Previously, he was senior vice president for Tivoli Systems.
Community Contribution: While serving on the board of Alexian Brothers Hospital Foundation, he launched a program providing free healthcare services to children of the working poor.
Lloyd D. Ward
President and CEO Maytag Corp.
Education: B.S. Michigan State University; M.B.A., Xavier University
Responsibilities: Oversees the $4.07 billion home and commercial appliances company, including its four business units: home solutions, commercial solutions, worldwide solutions (global markets) and emerging solutions (e-commerce).
Previous Experience: Ward joined the organization in April 1996 as executive vice president and president of Maytag Appliances. From 1988 until he joined Maytag, Ward held a variety of positions, including president of Pepsico's Frito Lay Central Division.
FYI: Captain of his college basketball team, Ward also has a black belt in karate.
|Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback|
|Author:||CLARKE, ROBYN D.|
|Date:||Feb 1, 2000|
|Previous Article:||The Future Is Now.|
|Next Article:||Has the Glass Ceiling Really Been Shattered?|