Senior vice president, architecture and planning, AT&T
When Kris Rinne graduated from college with a degree in math, her life plan was to become a high school math teacher and volleyball coach. Instead, a college professor arranged an interview for her with BellSouth, and her destiny was changed forever.
Today Rinne, who has more than 30 years of experience in the telecom industry, is responsible for AT&T's IT and network architecture and planning. This includes setting the direction for the network and the BSS/OSS systems. Prior to this, she was the CTO of Cingular Wireless.
Rinne plays a critical role for vendors trying to sell their wares to AT&T because she is responsible for the company's wireless network infrastructure and device technology vendor selection.
As one of the most prominent women executives in the wireless industry, Rinne is known for being approachable. At the FierceWireless "Path to 4G" conference held in conjunction with the CTIA Wireless 2008 conference, Rinne was a keynote speaker and spent nearly 30 minutes answering questions from attendees about AT&T's technology roadmap.