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Release Date: 07.18.2012 | Location: All Metro Atlanta | Organization: Turknett Leadership Group

Turknett Leadership Group Names First Lifetime Achievement Award Recipient

Turknett Leadership Group (TLG) announced today that Frank Skinner, who retired as the president of Southern Bell and the chief executive officer of BellSouth Telecommunications, is the first recipient of the organization’s Lifetime Achievement Award for Leadership Character. The award recognizes leaders who exemplify the highest standards of character and integrity over a lifetime of service to a firm and to the larger community.

Skinner, a native of Virginia, spent 40 years in the telecommunications industry.  A graduate of the University of Richmond, Skinner began his career with the Chesapeake and Potomac Telephone Company of Virginia (C&P) in 1952 after serving two tours in the United States Army.  He was named a vice president of C&P in 1970.

In 1973, Skinner became vice president and general manager of Southern Bell's North Carolina operations and later headed the company's Florida operations in Miami.  In 1982, he was elected president of Southern Bell.  He retired in November of 1992 as chief executive officer of BellSouth Telecommunications.  “Frank Skinner was one of the most respected leaders in BellSouth” said Phil Jacobs, former President of Georgia Operations for BellSouth, now the founding partner of The Pendleton Consulting Group, and the presenter of Skinner’s award.  “He had and still enjoys a reputation for absolute integrity. He was a role model for so many people, both inside the company and out. While known as being a fair, but demanding boss, he was also known for the respect with which he treated everyone, regardless of his or her position. Whatever cause Frank decided to support, it was better off because of his intellect, his energy and his passion. Frank Skinner epitomizes what it means to be a true ‘servant leader’.”

Skinner’s leadership has been felt throughout Atlanta and the southeast.  He has held volunteer leadership positions with the Atlanta Chamber of Commerce, the Atlanta Rotary Club, the National Board of the Salvation Army, and the United Way of Metropolitan Atlanta. He currently serves on the board of trustees for Morehouse College.  He holds the uncommon record of having chaired the United Way campaign in three major cities –Atlanta, Charlotte and Miami during his tenure with BellSouth. He has received numerous awards for his leadership and community service, including the Atlanta Rotary “Service Above Self” Award and the Blanchard Award for Outstanding Stewardship and Ethics in Business.

“We are honored to recognize Frank with our first Lifetime Achievement Award for his sustained contributions in leadership and in the community,” shares Lyn Turknett, president, TLG. “His consistent demonstration of good character in both his professional and personal life establishes a high water mark and provides inspiration for future leaders.”

Skinner was selected by an esteemed panel of judges including:

  • Kent C. "Oz" Nelson, retired chairman and CEO, UPS
  • Conchita Robinson, president and CEO, C. Robinson Associates, Inc.
  • Dr. Betty Siegel, president emeritus and endowed chair of leadership, ethics, and character, Kennesaw State University
  • Tom Crawford, Crawford Corporate Coaching, is the retired chairman and CEO of Crawford & Company and a 2007 Turknett Leadership Character Award winner

The presentation of the award will be held at the Leadership Character Awards ceremony on Wednesday, September 19, 2012 at the Georgia Aquarium.

To read about the nominees and winners from the 2011 event, visit

About the Leadership Character Awards:
Since 2003, the Turknett Leadership Character Awards have recognized individuals and companies who demonstrate character in leadership, by maintaining integrity while consistently balancing respect and responsibility.

About Turknett Leadership Group:
Turknett Leadership Group (TLG) is a talent management firm based in Atlanta that has assessed and developed high level leaders and their organizations throughout the U.S. for more than 25 years. Using sophisticated assessment tools and leadership coaching, the TLG professional staff combines extensive psychological expertise in the behavioral sciences with practical business sense and executive management experience.  TLG’s clients run the gamut from start-ups to American icons and many are consistently named to the top-shelf “Fortune’s Most Admired Companies” list.

Bob and Lyn Turknett are co-authors of Decent People Decent Company: How to Lead with Character at Work and in Life and creators of the Leadership Character Awards, which celebrates its ninth year in 2012. For more information visit:;; and




Contact Info

Contact Name: Elyse Hammett, APR

Company: EOS Marketing & Communications for Turknett Leadership Group

Phone: (404) 949-3777