Stankey Elected CEO Of AT&T, Effective June 1

Long-time AT&T executive John Stankey was elected the company’s new CEO, effective June 1, 2020.

AT&T’s current CEO Randall Stephenson is retiring, but will continue as executive chairman of the board of directors until January 2021. Stankey was also elected to AT&T’s board of directors.

Stankey was a key in Stephenson’s tumultuous plan to turn AT&T into more of a media-centric company. He was named head of WarnerMedia after AT&T acquired Time Warner and restructured it to be able to focus on creating content for the new streaming service HBO Max, which launched May 27.

In the process, most top executives at Time Warner left the company.

Stankey was named COO last October. The new CEO of WarnerMedia, former Hulu head Jason Kilar starts at the company next month.

“I congratulate John, and I look forward to partnering with him as the leadership team moves forward on our strategic initiatives while navigating the difficult economic and health challenges currently facing our country and the world,” said Stephenson. “John has the right experiences and skills, and the unflinching determination every CEO needs to act on his convictions. He has a terrific leadership team onboard to ensure AT&T remains strong and continues to deliver for customers and shareholders for years to come.”

“I’m honored to be elected the next CEO of AT&T, a company with a rich history and a bright future,” said Stankey.

Stankey joined AT&T in 1985. He worked in corporate strategy and technology, operations and media and entertainment at the company.

“My thanks go to Randall for his vision and outstanding leadership during a period of tremendous change and investment in the core capabilities needed to position AT&T well for the years ahead,” Stankey said. “And I appreciate the Board’s confidence in me leading the company during our next chapter of growth and innovation in keeping people connected, informed and entertained. We have a strong company, leading brands and a great employee team, which I’m privileged to lead. I couldn’t be more excited about the new opportunities we have to serve our customers and communities and create value for our shareholders.”

Jon Lafayette

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.