The chief executive of British Telecom is Dutch businessman Ben Verwaayen. Born in Driebergen on February 11, 1952, he studied Law and International Relations at Utrecht University, graduating in 1975. He began his career in the telecom industry in the same year as the general manager of ITT (International Telephone and Telegraph), later becoming president of leading Dutch company PTT Telecom in 1988. During this time he also gained a Master's Degree in Public Administration, also from Utrecht University. He left PTT in 1997 to join the board at New Jersey based telecom firm Lucent Technologies in 1997, first as vice-president and then vice chairman. In January 2002 he was appointed to the board of BT and officially became the company's new CEO in February 2002. As well as his responsibilities as CEO, Verwaayaen also sits on the board of Astro All Asia Networks and HealthCenter Internet Services, as well as the advisory council of ING.