Mr. William Kennard

Businessman, Ambassador
Committees: Finance

Bill Kennard is the cofounder and chairman of Velocitas Partners LLC, an asset management firm. Previously, he served as the United States Ambassador to the European Union from 2009 to 2013, appointed by President Barack Obama. From 2001 to 2009, Mr. Kennard was managing director at the Carlyle Group, a global asset management firm, where he led private equity investments in the telecommunications and media sectors. He served as chairman of the U.S. Federal Communications Commission from 1997 to 2001, appointed by President Bill Clinton. Before his appointment as FCC chairman, Mr. Kennard served as the FCC’s general counsel from 1993 until 1997. He joined the FCC from the law firm of Verner, Liipfert, Bernhard, McPherson, and Hand (now DLA Piper), where he was a partner and member of the firm’s board of directors.

Mr. Kennard currently serves as the chairman of the board at AT&T Inc., and is a member of the board of directors at Ford Motor Company, MetLife Inc. and Duke Energy Corporation. He is also a member of the board of trustees of Yale University. Mr. Kennard previously served on the boards of directors of the New York Times Company, Sprint-Nextel Corporation, as well as several companies controlled by the Carlyle Group. Mr. Kennard received a BA in communications from Stanford University and earned a law degree from Yale Law School. He was awarded honorary degrees by Howard University, Gallaudet University, and Long Island University.

Mr. Kennard and his wife, Deborah Kennedy, are the proud parents of Robert Kennard (EHS ’20), who is currently attending High Point University. They divide their time between Washington, DC, and Charleston, South Carolina.