It’s been over a year since Debra Lee stepped down from the helm of BET, and the businesswoman is continuing to make power moves. According to Black Enterprise, Lee was recently appointed to join AT&T’s board of directors.
Lee was tapped to join the board of the telecommunications company for her business acumen and leadership in the media industry. During her tenure as the CEO and chairman of BET, she developed new platforms and outlets that celebrated Black entertainment and artistry and she was a leading force in increasing the network’s budget by 50 percent. She started her journey with BET in 1986 and worked hard to rise up the ranks. Amongst some of the projects that she spearheaded was the creation of BET.com, the BET Awards, the BET Experience festival and the Centric network.
She joins AT&T’s board of directors after the company acquired Time Warner in an $85.4 billion deal. “Debra’s outstanding leadership, deep expertise and strong track record in the entertainment and media industry will be terrific additions to our board of directors,” AT&T chairman and CEO, Randall Stephenson said in a statement, according to Deadline. “Her unique perspective as a media industry leader and operations executive, and her lifetime commitment to community service give her valuable insights I look forward to having on our board.”
Serving on boards is nothing new to Lee. She has been on boards at Marriott International Inc. and Twitter. She currently serves on the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre’s board.
Her appointment comes at a time where there is a major need for racial diversity on boards. According to Reuters, between the years of 2016 and 2018, African Americans only accounted for 5 percent of new board directors.