Thursday, April 26, 2007

Whitacre to Leave AT&T with $158 Million Pension, Stephenson Takes Control

Edward E. Whitacre Jr. will retire as AT&T's CEO and chairman of the board effective June 3. Randall L. Stephenson, AT&T's chief operating officer, will succeed Whitacre as chairman and CEO.

Whitacre, 65, has been Chairman and CEO since 1990, when the company was Southwestern Bell, then the smallest of the so-called "Baby Bells." During his tenure, Whitacre led the company through a series of dramatic acquisitions and re-shaping the telecommunications landscape in the process.

Whitacre retires with a pension and deferred compensation worth around $158 million, along with additional perks, according to various media reports.

"I have had the extraordinary privilege to lead this company for 17 years, and I leave with complete confidence in the future of our great company," said Whitacre. "Randall Stephenson is an exceptional leader. He has a deep understanding of this business and a clear sense of where it should go."

Randall Stephenson currently serves as chief operating officer for AT&T for all wireless and wireline operations at AT&T. He was named chief operating officer for SBC Communications Inc. in April 2004, and continued as COO following SBC's acquisition of AT&T Corp. in November 2005. Stephenson began his career with Southwestern Bell Telephone in 1982 in the information technology organization in Oklahoma. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in accounting from the University of Central Oklahoma and a Master of Accountancy degree from the University of Oklahoma.


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