by Dallas Morning News
Less than a year ago, Anne Chow was promoted to CEO of AT&T Business, the telecommunications giant’s $37 billion unit that provides services to nearly 3 million business customers, including nearly all of the world’s Fortune 1000 companies.
The 54-year-old daughter of Taiwanese immigrants is the first woman to hold this position and the first woman of color to be named CEO at any AT&T company in its 144-year history. She’s also the corporation’s highest-ranking Asian American.
For most mortals, that would be enough precedent to absorb for a while.
But then, Chow isn’t like most mortals.
She studied classical piano at The Juilliard School as a child, is the proud mother of two Generation Z daughters, clips coupons, has co-authored a book on unconscious bias and is obsessed with fitness boxing.
You might take comfort in knowing that she stinks at golf and can’t sew a button on a shirt.
On Friday, Chow became the first female or minority global CEO to chair the United Way of Metropolitan Dallas’ annual workplace campaign.
While Chow is honored to be the standard-bearer for diversity, she says it comes with an obligation. “Those of us who are given the opportunity of being first must ensure that we’re not the only or the last,” she says.
Chow shrugs off the suggestion that this is a lot to tackle during her rookie CEO year in the midst of a pandemic, social unrest and the dawn of 5G technology.
“As someone who has been so fortunate in my position and in my life, I have an obligation to serve,” Chow says in a Webex interview. “My lifelong journey and mission is to leave this place better from whence I came.”