Phil Burgess

Free! 1 hour

30+ years of senior executive experience, and has held the role of President & CEO as well as Group Managing Director of Communications.


Phil Burgess

Phil Burgess has spent more than 30 years as a senior executive in the corporate, public service, association management and academic worlds focusing on global communications, strategy management and public policy. He has excelled in a wide variety of roles from the boardroom and meeting room to the seminar room and classroom.

Burgess advises corporate and government leaders and elected officials on leadership strategies and matters related to political culture, principled leadership and the New Economy. He is President of The Annapolis Institute, a think tank that addresses issues of principled leadership in the public and private sectors.

Burgess’ areas of expertise encompass international trade, natural resources, telecommunications and corporate social responsibility. He also leads research on the Internet’s impact on modern life and work.

In the private sector, Burgess has handled media relations as well as strategic and crisis communications for Fortune 150 companies. He has helped develop and implement corporate-wide public policy as a member of the senior leadership teams at multibillion-dollar firms in the U.S. and Australia. Burgess addresses corporate boards on social and technological trends, especially related to the economic and social impact of the digital revolution and the changing public views of corporate social responsibility.

During 2005–08, Burgess was Group MD for Public Policy and Communications at Telstra, Australia’s $35 billion telecom giant. His responsibilities included public policy, regulatory affairs, government and media relations, corporate communications, executive and BU services and the Telstra Foundation.

Burgess held high-level management positions at the former US West, Inc., the multibillion-dollar telecom company headquartered in Denver. From 1987 to 1999, he was Special Assistant to the COB and CEO, then served as Communications and Public Policy CVP until Qwest acquired US West in 2000. In the latter role, Burgess developed and executed the strategic communications plan and oversaw management of media relations; product and brand publicity; employee, executive and investor communications; speechwriting; creative services; Olympic programs; and the US West Foundation.

From 1982 to 1999, Burgess was President of a consulting firm providing management and investment counsel and related services to domestic and overseas clients including major oil, chemical and insurance companies and railroads, as well as several federal government departments and agencies.

While President/ED of the Western Governors’ Policy Office from 1977 to 1982, Burgess directed the Western Coal Export Council, a multinational strategic planning group promoting Far East coal sales. Participants included scores of U.S. coal producers, railroads and ports plus the utility, steel and cement industries of Japan, Korea and Taiwan. Burgess edited the council’s extensive market analysis report.

In 1978, Burgess was elected to the National Academy of Public Administration, later serving as its president and CEO. From 1979 to 1993, Burgess presented the annual American Outlook Lecture in Tokyo at the Management Institute of the Long-Term Credit Bank of Japan. Burgess began his career in 1965 as a political science professor at Ohio State University. He directs research into the impact of the Internet as a senior fellow at the Center for the Digital Future at the University of Southern California.

A prolific author, Burgess has written nine books and hundreds of journal articles, technical reports and op-ed pieces, as well as a weekly syndicated newspaper column. The sought-after speaker has appeared on PBS, Fox News, CNN, CNBC, C-SPAN and NPR, among others. In addition to Australia, Burgess has lived and worked in Europe and the former USSR and traveled in Asia, the Mideast and South America.

The former Fulbright scholar holds a Ph.D. from the School of International Service at the American University in Washington, D.C. and a B.A. with honors from Knox College in Galesburg, Ill.