Charlene Lake, Sr. Vice President Public Affairs, and Chief Sustainability Officer, is re sponsible for leading AT&T’s philanthropic and volunteerism endeavors, third-party advo cacy program and public affairs functional support as well as coordinating signature initiatives that connect social needs with business objectives.
Ms. Lake began her career at Southwestern Bell Telephone in 1986 in Topeka, Kansas, and served in management roles in financial communications, media relations and em ployee communications in Kansas, Missouri and Texas. She assumed leadership over SBC’s corporate advertising and sports marketing department during the mid-1990s, and managed the organizations through the mergers of Pacific Bell, Southern New England Telephone and Ameritech. In 2003, Ms. Lake began developing a public affairs discipline within the SBC External Affairs department, and in 2007 launched the development of AT&T's centralized corporate citizenship and sustainability function. A mass communi cation graduate of Kansas State University, she also serves on the Advisory Council at KSU’s A.Q. Miller School of Journalism and Mass Communications. Ms. Lake began her professional life as a journalist, working on daily newspapers in Kansas.
Ms. Lake serves on the Board of Directors of the Public Affairs Council, a leading inter national association designed to advance the field of public affairs, and on the Board of Directors of America’s Promise Alliance, an organization committed to preparing young people for college, work and life. Ms. Lake sits on the Corporate Advisory Board of Women Impacting Public Policy, a national bipartisan group of 500,000 women business owners who actively engage in the political process. She also serves on the Council of Advisors of the Institute for Economic Empowerment for Women, which among other projects, partnered with the U.S. Department of State to teach women entrepreneurs in Afghanistan and Rwanda about free enterprise and market power. For her demonstra tion of sustained leadership and excellence in public service, she was honored with the Iron Jawed Angel award in 2008 by The Lugar Excellence in Public Service Series in Washington, D.C. Ms. Lake also serves on Collin College Foundation Board of Directors in Dallas, Texas.
A Kansas native, she is a resident of the Dallas Metroplex.