The 25 Most Powerful People in US Wireless and Wireline 2014

Tom Wheeler, Chairman of the FCC
Image: Mark Wilson/Getty Images

Ever wonder what it takes to change the direction of an entire industry? If so, you might want to take a cue from some of the players we have featured here, on our Most Powerful People in U.S. Wireless and Wireline 2014 list.

In this list, we've included men and women from all areas of the telecom industry (wireless, wireline and even a few from the video side) because we believe these areas are rapidly converging and those who exert influence in one area of the business typically have just as much power on the other.

Gauging a person's power isn't an easy task. When we compiled this list, we looked for individuals who we believe have a unique mix of leadership and business acumen who are not only leading their organizations but are also exerting great influence over the entire industry. We looked at people like T-Mobile's (NYSE:TMUS) John Legere, who has singlehandedly changed the way wireless services are sold to U.S consumers. Or Nokia's (NYSE:NOK) Rajeev Suri, who has been successfully rebuilding his beleaguered infrastructure company now that it's unshackled from the devices business. Another key power player worth noting is Sprint's (NYSE: S) new CEO Marcelo Claure. Although he's only been on the job a few months, he is shaking up his management team and hinting that big changes are ahead.

But power can be fleeting. Just look at some of the well-known players on our 2013 list who did not make the cut this year. For example, Intel's Brian Krzanich is off the list because of his company's continued struggle to get a foothold in wireless. Also off the list of Paul Jacobs, former CEO of Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM). Jacobs still remains chairman of Qualcomm but his role is less visible now that Steve Mollenkopf is Qualcomm's CEO.

This list is a compilation of who we think are the innovators and leaders in the U.S. wireless and wireline markets. We realize that the telecom industry is a global business, and many of our candidates oversee international companies, but we selected people based upon their influence here in the United States.

You may not agree with all our picks but I can assure you that this list was not compiled lightly. The Fierce editors scrutinized every person we selected to make sure we could justify their position. Write me or comment below and let me know if you disagree with our picks or think we overlooked someone. --Sue

1. Tom Wheeler, Chairman, FCC - Most Powerful Person in Wireless and Wireline
2. John Legere, President and CEO, T-Mobile - Most Powerful Person in Wireless and Wireline
3. Randall Stephenson, Chairman and CEO, AT&T - Most Powerful Person in Wireless and Wireline
4. Lowell McAdam, Chairman and CEO, Verizon Communications – Most Powerful Person in Wireless and Wireline
5. Tim Cook, CEO, Apple - Most Powerful Person in Wireless and Wireline
6. Larry Page, CEO, Google - Most Powerful Person in Wireless and Wireline
7. Marcelo Claure, President and CEO, Sprint - Most Powerful Person in Wireless and Wireline
8. Glen Post, III, CEO and President, CenturyLink - Most Powerful Person in Wireless and Wireline
9. Brian Roberts, CEO and Chairman, Comcast - Most Powerful Person in Wireless and Wireline
10. Charlie Ergen, Chairman, Dish Network - Most Powerful Person in Wireless and Wireline
11. Reed Hastings, CEO, Netflix - Most Powerful Person in Wireless and Wireline
12. J.K. Shin, co-CEO and Head of IT & Mobile Communication, Samsung - Most Powerful Person in Wireless and Wireline
13. Satya Nadella, CEO, Microsoft - Most Powerful Person in Wireless and Wireline
14. Hans Vestberg, President and CEO, Ericsson - Most Powerful Person in Wireless and Wireline
15. Mark Zuckerberg, CEO, Facebook - Most Powerful Person in Wireless and Wireline
16. Steve Mollenkopf, CEO, Qualcomm - Most Powerful Person in Wireless and Wireline
17. John Chambers, CEO and Chairman, Cisco - Most Powerful Person in Wireless and Wireline
18. Jeff Bezos, CEO, Amazon - Most Powerful Person in Wireless and Wireline
19. Maggie Wilderotter, CEO and Chairman, Frontier - Most Powerful Person in Wireless and Wireline
20. Hu Meena, President and CEO, C Spire - Most Powerful Person in Wireless and Wireline
21. Yang Yuanqing, CEO, Lenovo - Most Powerful Person in Wireless and Wireline
22. Huawei's rotating CEOs - Most Powerful People in Wireless and Wireline
23. Rajeev Suri, President and CEO, Nokia - Most Powerful People in Wireless and Wireline
24. Jeff Storey, CEO and President, Level 3 - Most Powerful Person in Wireless and Wireline
25. Sue Swenson, Chairwoman, FirstNet – Most Powerful Person in Wireless and Wireline

 

The 25 Most Powerful People in US Wireless and Wireline 2014