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Dallas Mavericks CEO Shares Playbook with Graduates


On May 18, The Hockaday School welcomed Chief Executive Officer of the Dallas Mavericks Cynthia Marshall as its 2019 Commencement speaker. Graduates, families, guests, trustees, alumnae, and faculty joined together as the school year came to a close, and Ms.Marshall’s message was heard by the community. As a trailblazer in the sports and recreation industry, female chief executive, and woman of color, both the seniors and their guests heard her inspirational story and her message as they reflected on their senior year and looked forward with great anticipation to the next chapters of their lives.

The Hockaday School is the largest all-girls independent school in the United States, and Ms. Marshall’s background exemplifies the mission of the school as shown through her work and community involvement as she herself leads a life of purpose and impact. She is an extraordinary role model for the girls who are steadfast and committed to pursuing their dreams and making a positive and lasting difference in the world today and in the future.

Ms. Marshall’s story is spectacular. As CEO of the Dallas Mavericks, she leads the charge for a culture transformation with the vision of making the Mavericks organization the industry standard for inclusion and diversity in the National Basketball Association. Unpredictable but passionate about the power of girls education, she lets nothing stand in her way as she works with her team to revolutionize the culture of the Dallas Mavericks to ensure employees have the best possible work environment.

Less than two years ago before she joined the Dallas Mavs, she was an entrepreneur and founded her own consulting firm specializing in leadership, diversity and inclusion, culture transformation, and optimization of resources. Before her consulting career, she spent more than 35 years at AT&T in several roles and eventually rose to Senior Vice President – Human Resources and Chief Diversity Officer. During this time that she was responsible for developing leaders. In addition, she and her colleagues created a model culture focused on diversity and inclusion, Diversity Inc’s 2017 Top 50 list of companies included AT&T a top three companies. In addition to this accolade, AT&T was honored on Fortune’s 100 Best Companies to Work For in 2017, one of only two Fortune 50 companies, for the first time.

Ms. Marshall received multiple accolades throughout her career and is recognized by national organizations for her visionary leadership. The Network Journal honored her on their the 25 Most Influential Women in Business; awarded the ATHENA® Leadership Program Award by the Dallas Regional Chamber; named in the 50 Most Powerful Women in Corporate America by Black Enterprise magazine; named to Ebony magazine’s 2016 “Power 100” list; and named HR Executive of the Year – Best in Biz Award.

She graduated from the University of California, Berkeley and holds degrees in Business Administration and Human Resources Management as well as four honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters degrees from Grambling State University, Livingstone College, Bennett College, and Texas College.

The Hockaday Class of 2019 enjoyed hearing from Ms. Marshall on Saturday, May 18, and will treasure her timeless message that she conveyed as they focus on their futures and college careers.

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