When looking back at his time at Edinboro University, AT&T executive Xavier Williams reminiscences about a few nostalgic experiences.
There’s the 7 a.m. conditioning runs with the Fighting Scots basketball team, enjoying dinner in Van Houten Dining Hall, socializing with friends during Homecoming Weekend, tutoring in the Baron-Forness Library, and – of course – careening through a snowy campus landscape.
Two sentiments, however, stand out to the President of the Public Sector and Wholesale Solutions for AT&T Services, Inc.
“The diversity of friendships and how I was embraced for who I was as a person,” said Williams, who was selected as the spring 2018 Commencement speaker at Edinboro University.
Williams, who earned his bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and a minor in Mathematics from Edinboro in 1989, will return to campus on Saturday, May 12, to deliver a keynote address and receive an Honorary Doctorate for his contributions to society and to Edinboro University.
“Xavier exemplifies excellence in all that he does. He is a great example of the hard-working, dedicated students at Edinboro University,” said Dr. Scott Miller, Dean of Edinboro University’s School of Business and College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, who has worked with Williams over the past six years to develop the Xavier and Tina Williams Summer Business Academy for youth. “After his time at Edinboro – where he excelled as a scholar-athlete – he has demonstrated the dedication to his profession, family and community that illustrates the character of our exceptional students.”
In his current role as President, Williams has end-to-end responsibility for AT&T government clients at the federal, state and local levels, as well as education customers and wholesale customers globally.
Throughout his AT&T career, Williams has worked in various disciplines including finance, product management, business planning, sales, human resources and customer service. He has achieved extensive leadership experience through serving in a variety of executive positions. Most recently, Williams served as President of AT&T’s Business Operations.
Marilyn Goellner, Edinboro’s Vice President for Advancement, said that Williams has shown leadership and dedication in business and volunteerism.
“He demonstrates exceptional character through his philanthropy and service to others,” she said. “Xavier and (his wife) Tina Williams share common values with Edinboro University, and their generosity has been instrumental in bringing gifted young minds to campus who have the opportunity to learn from talented mentors.”
Williams has received numerous awards throughout his career, including Edinboro University’s Distinguished Alumni Award, the AT&T Corporation Chairman’s Diversity Award, Diversity MBA Top 100 under 50 Executive Leaders and Savoy Top 100 Most Influential Blacks in Corporate America.
In addition to his numerous national awards, Williams said that receiving an Honorary Doctorate from his alma mater is the achievement of a lifetime.
“I fully credit my time and experiences at Edinboro for many of my personal and professional achievements thus far in life,” said Williams, a native of Washington, D.C. “To be recognized by the ‘Boro, I’m humbled, speechless and honestly have emotions that I cannot adequately articulate.”
Following his academic career at Edinboro University, Williams earned his MBA from the University of Pittsburgh. Throughout his career, Williams has been involved in various board activities including Make-A-Wish America Foundation, Urban League of Pittsburgh, AT&T Foundation, Pennsylvania’s State System of Higher Education Foundation and Asian Pacific Islanders for Professional and Community Advancement.
To graduating Edinboro students, Williams offers advice: “Know that whatever your mind can conceive and believe, you can achieve. Set big hairy, audacious goals for yourself and work towards achieving them. Don’t be scared to be great.”
Photo caption: Xavier Williams, President of the Public Sector and Wholesale Solutions for AT&T Services, Inc., will deliver the keynote address at Edinboro University’s spring commencement on May 12 and receive an Honorary Doctorate.