During this session, Cynt Marshall will talk about her life and role as SVP of HR and Chief Diversity Officer at AT&T, her move to CEO of the Dallas Mavericks, her strategy for values-based leadership, and why putting people first matters the most. She’ll also share the difference between diversity and inclusion and why both are important for success, and why HR is the heart of any organization. Cynt’s vibrant attitude and enthusiasm for her job is contagious, and she’ll have you dancing by the time the minutes are up.
Cynthia Marshall has been a dynamic force for inclusion and diversity within the Mavericks organization and over a 36-year career at AT&T. When Cynt was hired as new the CEO of the Mavs in March 2018, she set her sights on a culture transformation. Her vision was for the Mavericks organization to become the NBA standard for inclusion and diversity, and brought transparency, trust and her values-based leadership style that evolved the company culture in her first 100 days.
Prior to her joining the Mavs, Cynt founded Marshalling Resources, a consulting firm specializing in Leadership, Diversity & Inclusion, Culture Transformation and overall optimization of people resources. Upon the company naming its first Chief Inclusion Officer in June 2017, Cynt worked with The Dow Chemical Company to develop and implement a strategy for institutionalizing an inclusive culture.
Cynt’s notoriety began many years ago as a young Officer at AT&T and grew exponentially when she served as Senior Vice President – Human Resources & Chief Diversity Officer at AT&T. There she was responsible for identifying and developing leaders, aligning employees with the company’s vision and priorities, overseeing major business unit HR support, performance development, employee engagement, skills transformation initiatives, EEO and Affirmative Action. Cynt also led the team that created a world class Diversity and Inclusion culture, landing AT&T in the top 3 on Diversity Inc’s 2017 Top 50 list of companies. She also spearheaded the work that for the first time placed AT&T on Fortune’s 100 Best Companies to Work For list in 2017, one of only two Fortune 50 companies.
Before her SVP-Human Resources and Chief Diversity Office roles, Cynt served as President-AT&T North Carolina where she became the first African-American chair of the North Carolina State Chamber of Commerce. Prior to her North Carolina appointment, Cynt held a variety of executive line and staff, technical and non-technical positions at AT&T and its predecessor companies.
Widely recognized for her visionary leadership and ability to get things done Cynt is the recipient of several honors and awards. Most recently, Cynt was touted as one of Adweek’s 30 Most Powerful Women in Sports and was selected as one of the 2019 Women of Power Legacy Award honorees by Black Enterprise. In 2017, she was honored by The Network Journal as one of the 25 Most Influential Women in Business. In 2017, Cynt was awarded the ATHENA® Leadership Program Award by the Dallas Regional Chamber, which recognizes exceptional women who excel in their careers, contribute to their communities and develop women leaders. This annual award is presented by chambers of commerce, women’s organizations and universities worldwide. In 2019 and three times prior, she was selected as one of the “50 Most Powerful Women in Corporate America” by Black Enterprise magazine and named to Ebony magazine’s 2016 “Power 100” list. In 2014, industry analysts and members of the press conferred on Cynt the HR Executive of the Year – Best in Biz Award. For her efforts on behalf of the people of North Carolina, in 2013 Cynt received the prestigious Leadership North Carolina Governor’s Award, which honors just one citizen each year for lifetime achievements.
Cynt graduated from the University of California-Berkeley with degrees in Business Administration and Human Resources Management and holds four honorary Doctorate degrees. She has chaired a variety of non-profit boards and is currently on the board of Dallas CASA, Dallas Regional Chamber, Texas Women’s Foundation, and a member of the Executive Leadership Council (ELC).
The fourth of six children, Cynt grew up in Richmond, California, and lives in the Dallas area. She and her husband, Kenneth Marshall, have four adult children.