AT&T Names Lori Lee From Video Entertainment and Broadband Unit Its New CMO

Company's First CMO Shuffle Since 2007

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Lori Lee, senior EVP, global marketing officer, AT&T
Lori Lee, senior EVP, global marketing officer, AT&T

Cathy Coughlin, the top marketer at AT&T since 2007, has stepped down from daily responsibilities, the company said Wednesday. She will be succeeded by Lori Lee, a senior exec VP who led marketing at the Home Solutions division.

Ms. Coughlin will continue as an employee of AT&T, consulting for Chairman-CEO Randall Stephenson, a spokesman said. She most recently steered the carrier's anti-texting-and-driving campaign "It Can Wait" campaign.

Ms. Lee, who joined AT&T in 1997, is known for finance chops. Home Solutions has become increasingly important for AT&T, housing video entertainment, broadband services and AdWorks, the company's advertising arm. All those areas are seeing deeper investment from AT&T, as the firm pushes into new markets, like the connected home and broadcast, pending its DirecTV acquisition.

The telecom -- and advertising juggernaut -- has seen considerable shifts in its top marketing brass lately. Daryl Evans, the number two at the sizable Mobility division left for consultancy MediaLink in October. Two months later, Esther Lee, the senior VP and well-respected branding expert who reported to Ms. Coughlin, departed for the CMO role at MetLife.

Ms. Lee's position remains unfilled, an AT&T spokesman said.

In 2009, Ms. Coughlin claimed the number four spot in the Ad Age Power Players.

AT&T spent $1.64 billion in measured media in 2014, a 12% decline from the prior year, according to figures from Kantar Media.

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CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story said Ms. Lee steered the "It Can Wait" campaign. In fact, Ms. Coughlin did. We regret the error.

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