The Association of U S West Retirees



Qwest names Tom Richards operations chief
By Andy Vuong
Denver Post
Wednesday, July 30, 2009

Qwest and its board of directors announced today that Tom Richards has been appointed chief operating officer.

Richards currently serves as executive vice president of business markets group, a unit that generates $4 billion to $5 billion in revenue annually.

Richards will now oversee that group, as well as mass markets, wholesale, marketing, networks and information technology.  He will continue to report to Qwest chief executive officer Ed Mueller.

"Tom is a proven, market-tested telecommunications veteran who brought continued focus to our (business markets group) and achieved significantly improved results," Mueller said in a written statement.

Richards was recruited to Qwest by former CEO Dick Notebaert in 2005.  He worked with Notebaert at Ameritech along with former Qwest chief financial officer Oren Shaffer and former Qwest executive vice president of operations Barry Allen.

Notebaert, Allen and Shaffer all retired from Qwest last year.  Asked in September by The Post whether he was next, Richards, 53, responded:

"Those guys are old.  I say that tongue in cheek," he said.  "I'm having fun doing what we're doing.  I've invested a lot in 2 1/2 years to build this company.  There's a lot more work to do even though we've done a lot.  In these kinds of positions you never know.  I'm here to help and do whatever Ed thinks needs to be done."

Andy Vuong: 303-954-1209 or