The Most Powerful African Americans In Corporate America - Page 12 of 24
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The Most Powerful African Americans In Corporate America

tenure with the company, Combs has held numerous engineering and management positions. He became vice president of the Western region in 1996 and was named president and chief operating officer in 2001. Prior to joining ONG in 1984, Combs spent five years as a manager in the telecommunications industry. He also serves on several corporate boards.

Martin Davis, Executive Vice President & CIO, Wachovia, Atlantic Region, Age: 41, Davis is a leader in information technology at Wachovia, a business services company with $401 billion in assets and a market cap of $61 billion. Wachovia is one of the largest providers of financial services to retail, brokerage, and corporate customers throughout the East Coast and the world. Davis handles the technology for all of Wachovia’s businesses, covering a range of bank offerings, complete brokerage services, asset management, wealth management, and innovative products for corporate and individual customers. More than 9 million households and 900,000 business customers are acquainted with Wachovia Bank, Wachovia Securities, and Wachovia Mortgage brand names. A graduate of the Young Executive Institute and the Executive Leadership Program at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, Davis is accountable for all strategic, employee, and business processes.

Steve Davis, President & COO/ President, Multibranding, Long John Silver’s / YUM! Brands, Age: 46, As president and COO, Davis oversees company and franchise operations, leadership, and marketing for the Long John Silver’s brand, a quick-service seafood chain with more than 1,200 restaurants worldwide. A seasoned restaurant executive with strong operational and marketing skills, Davis joined Pizza Hut, a YUM! Brands company, in 1993 and rose to senior vice president of concept development. On Oct. 18, 2004, Davis took on added responsibilities for the company’s 2,600 multibrand restaurant operations worldwide. Multibranding accounted for approximately 12% of the company’s traditional restaurant base in the U.S. and generated almost $185 million in U.S. company store profits and franchise fees in 2003. YUM! Brands, with more than 33,000 restaurants in more than 100 countries, saw revenues of $8.4 billion in 2004.

Jerri DeVard, Sr. VP, Brand Management & Marketing Comm., Verizon Communications Inc., Age: 45, Since January of 2003, DeVard has been responsible for leading all corporate initiatives to build and strengthen the Verizon brand worldwide. She also manages advertising, media planning and buying, and direct mail response for the company’s Domestic Telecom group. Verizon had revenues of $67.8 billion in 2003. Prior to joining Verizon, DeVard was chief marketing officer at Citigroup, responsible for the e-consumer line of business. She also held other positions in customer acquisition and new business development. Before joining Citigroup, she was vice president of marketing for color cosmetics at Revlon, vice president of marketing for Harrah’s Entertainment in New Orleans, and she held several brand management positions at the Pillsbury Co. in Minneapolis.

Charles E. Phillips Jr., Co-president & Director, Oracle Corp., Age:, A former Marine captain, Phillips went into combat as soon as he enlisted at Oracle, the $9.5 billion software company. He was on the front lines of an 18-month battle for rival


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