Ralph de la Vega, Chairman
Ralph de la Vega is chairman of the National Hispanic Initiatives Committee. Also a member of the BSA's National Executive Board, Mr. de la Vega also serves Scouting as a member of the national Finance Support, Scoutreach, and Audit committees.
Mr. de la Vega is president and chief executive officer of the nation’s leading wireless carrier, the wireless unit of AT&T. He is responsible for all aspects of wireless operations, including sales, marketing, operations and network. He was appointed to this position in October 2007.
Previously, he served as group president for Regional Telecommunications and Entertainment, where he was responsible for overall leadership in regional wireline, including consumer, regional business sales and network.
From 2004 to 2006, Mr. de la Vega served as chief operating officer of Cingular Wireless, where he was responsible for technology planning, network operations, marketing, sales and customer care.
Before joining Cingular in January 2004, he served as president-BellSouth Latin America, with overall responsibility for BellSouth's operations in 11 countries: Argentina, Uruguay, Colombia, Venezuela, Chile, Peru, Ecuador, Panama, Nicaragua, Brazil, and Guatemala.
He also has served as BellSouth's president of Broadband and Internet Services. In this position, he had overall responsibility for the deployment, marketing and operations of broadband services, such as DSL. In addition, he had responsibility for BellSouth Internet Services and BellSouth's rapidly growing data support groups.
Mr. de la Vega started his career in 1974 with BellSouth (then Southern Bell) as a management assistant. He has held numerous positions of increasing responsibility in Network Planning, Consumer Services, Engineering and Operations—including a rotational assignment at Telcordia (Bellcore) — and was responsible for all BellSouth Telecommunications Network Operations in Florida, Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana.
A native of Cuba, he holds a bachelor of science in Mechanical Engineering degree from Florida Atlantic University and a master of business administration degree from Northern Illinois University, and he has completed the Executive Program at the University of Virginia.
Mr. de la Vega's achievements have been recognized by several prestigious organizations, including the magazine Hispanic Engineer & Information Technology, which listed him one of the “50 Most Important Hispanics in Technology and Business" for three consecutive years (2003–2005); Hispanic Business magazine, which listed him as one of the "100 influential" individuals in 2004 and 2005; and Hispanic Trends magazine, which named him one of the top 100 professionals in 2004.
A resident of Atlanta, Georgia, Mr. de la Vega also serves his community as a member of the Executive Committee and board, as well as chairman of the Education Committee, for Junior Achievement Worldwide, and as vice chairman, Executive Committee chairman, and Hispanic Initiatives chairman for Junior Achievement of Georgia.
2008 National Hispanic Initiatives Committee
Ralph de la Vega, Chairman
Tico Perez, BSA National Commissioner
Ernest W. Bromley
Mario M. Carrera
Sen. Mel Martinez
Most Rev. James A. Tamayo, D.D.
National Hispanic Initiatives Division
Marcos A. Nava, Director
Maria Dahl-Smith, Associate Director