Thomas M. Rutledge
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
Thomas M. Rutledge is the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Charter Communications, which under the Spectrum brand provides Internet, TV, Voice and Mobile communications to more than 31 million customers in 41 states, with more than 96,000 employees. Under Mr. Rutledge’s leadership, Charter completed mergers with Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks — more than tripling the size of the company.
Mr. Rutledge and his leadership team have positioned Charter to be the connectivity provider of choice well into the future for both residential and business customers, having invested $40 billion in technology and infrastructure since 2016. The company has established an all-digital cable TV and streaming video platform, gigabit broadband connections and a competitive mobile offering across its service area of 53 million homes and businesses. Its Spectrum-branded services are backed by outstanding service — the result of returning the work of thousands of customer service jobs from overseas to U.S. call centers and insourcing its technical workforce, prioritizing superior craftsmanship with every customer interaction.
Prior to becoming CEO of Charter in 2012, Mr. Rutledge served as Chief Operating Officer of Cablevision Systems, where he oversaw the company's cable television business; Rainbow Media, the company's national programming business, which includes the AMC, IFC, Sundance TV and WEtv networks; Clearview Cinemas and Newsday. While at Cablevision, Mr. Rutledge oversaw a $5 billion fiber-optic network upgrade, the first high-definition video on demand offering, the first cable footprint-wide rollout of VoIP phone service, the first WiFi mesh wireless cable network deployment, and greenlit the iconic television series Mad Men, Breaking Bad, and The Walking Dead.
He began his cable career in 1972 at Eastern Telecom working as a technician while going to college. In 1977, he joined American Television and Communications (ATC), a predecessor of Time Warner Cable, as a manager trainee where he served in a series of progressively larger leadership roles, eventually becoming President of Time Warner Cable in 2001.
Mr. Rutledge is a former chairman of the NCTA – The Internet & Television Association and currently serves on the boards of NCTA, CableLabs, C-SPAN, the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History and AdvanceCT. In 2011, he received the NCTA Vanguard Award for Distinguished Leadership, the cable industry’s highest honor, and is a member of the Cable Hall of Fame and the Broadcasting and Cable Hall of Fame.
He received a B.A. in economics from California University in California, Pa., in 1977.