In December, 2017, Melissa Bolden was selected as one of the “Top Ten Latina Corporate Executives of the Year” by Latina Style magazine.
Melissa is proud of her Hispanic heritage. She is a native Texan born in San Antonio, but both sets of her grandparents and previous ancestry were from Mexico. She has built a career over 21 years with AT&T and is now the Assistant Vice President, Program Management – Platform Transformation. She leads a cross-functional team migrating AT&T call centers off a DIRECTV platform for ordering, billing and provisioning over to a UVerse platform. It is a $700M program that will generate more than $1B in savings over five years. Her team will train over 150,000 call center agents, retail reps and field ops techs onto the new platforms and tools. It is the largest merger transformation investment that AT&T has ever implemented and largest of its kind in the industry.
In the future Melissa hopes to lead a large operational team and continue to enhance and simplify the AT&T customer experience. She enjoys roles where she can drive strategic, transformational change that continues to evolve as the telecommunications industry does.
Corporate Executive Development Program (CEDP)
Melissa’s manager sponsored her participation in the SMU Cox CEDP in 2017, based on recommendations from other managers with AT&T who had previously participated.
The CEDP, a partnership between SMU Cox School of Business and the National Hispanic Corporate Council, is an innovative executive development experience for high-potential mid-level Hispanic managers in Fortune 1000 companies. The program is guided by an advisory board that includes top talent management executives from sponsoring companies and leadership development experts from SMU Cox, all dedicated to advancing Hispanic managers to executive positions in global enterprises.
Melissa and her leadership are confident her experience with the Corporate Executive Development Program enhanced her current position and will help her advance to the position she seeks in the future.
“The CEDP program highlighted some of our cultural differences that Hispanics need to acknowledge to be successful,” said Melissa. “It taught me to be more confident about the value I bring to the table and that it’s OK to speak to my capabilities; it’s not bragging. Hispanics tend to be somewhat of a subservient culture, and it’s important to be respectful, yet assertive. In addition, the relationships that I developed with colleagues and mentors were also invaluable.”
Melissa fearlessly leads massive projects and is able to earn the respect and support of peers to accomplish bold goals,” said Vicki Jones, SVP Operations, Mobility & Entertainment, AT&T. “She earns the respect of others by operating with integrity, fact-based decision making, and a sincere interest in the development of others. Leaders of her caliber are rare.”