A Call to Action: Make Earth Day Everyday

By: James Gowen
Verizon Green Team at Hillsborough River State Park outside Tampa, Fla.

April is Earth Month and April 22 is Earth Day, the birthday of the modern environmental movement that started in 1970.  This is the anniversary to celebrate -- and activate -- environmental awareness. 

But Earth Day is not solely a time for celebrating and expanding environmental awareness; it is also an opportunity for us to make a contribution toward making the world a better place for future generations. My responsibilities as a father of five wonderful children and as the chief sustainability officer at Verizon, keep me energized and motivated to treat every day like Earth Day. To educate, motivate and involve others in what we all need to do to protect and preserve our planet.

All year-round, our company encourages the employee-members of the Verizon Green Team to volunteer in community events focused on improving the environment. To celebrate Earth Day, we have pledged to participate in more than 25 projects in communities where we live and work, to help preserve the beauty of our planet and its resources for future generations. You can register for some of these events below.

Thus far, Verizon Green Team members have participated at three events in honor of Earth Day. You can view some of the fun we’ve had working alongside community leaders in beautiful places like Little Rock, Arkansas; San Diego, California; and Hillsborough River State Park just outside of Tampa, Florida.

Earth Day event at Hillsborough River State Park, outside Tampa, Fla.

Recently, nearly 7,000 Verizon Green Team members celebrated Earth Hour – turning off lights at their homes across nearly 30 countries, while Verizon darkened nearly 500 building locations around the world.

Verizon will host educational Earth Day events for its employees on April 22 in Lake Mary, Florida; Tulsa, Oklahoma; Basking Ridge, New Jersey; Hanover Maryland; Elgin, South Carolina; Hidden Ridge, Texas; Ashburn, Virginia; and Reading, England. Participants will learn more about an array of sustainability topics including electric vehicles, tree planting, environmental stewardship, how to work green, and how to live greener lifestyles. 

During the days leading up to Earth Day, we will continue to post more blogs about these events and related eco-topics on our new Earth Day page, which was created to build awareness about climate change and the environmental issues of our day.

Get Involved

  • Share Earth Day fun facts and tips for a greener lifestyle.
  • Follow @VerizonGreen to learn more about sustainability.
  • Join the below community sustainability events.
Ala. Huntsville 4/11/2015 Citywide Cleanup and Beautification Day
Texas Irving 4/11/2015 Don't Mess With Texas
Kan. Overland Park 4/11/2015 Stream Clean Up
N.J. Branchburg 4/18/2015 Raritan River Cleanup
N.C. Charlotte 4/18/2015 Clean Up For Change
Texas Grapevine 4/18/2015 Epic Earth Day
Ga. Milton 4/18/2015 Milton 2015 Earth Day Festival
Ariz. Phoenix 4/18/2015 Trail & Park Beautification with Maricopa County Parks
Calif. Santa Barbara 4/18/2015 Santa Barbara Earth Day
Utah West Jordan 4/18/2015 Waterwise Trees and Shrubs Tour
Md. Bladensburg 4/25/2015 Anascotia Earth Day
Ohio Hilliard 4/25/2015 Earth Day Celebration in Hilliard
Ind. Indianapolis 4/25/2015 Mayor Ballard's Great Indy Cleanup
Mass. Lincoln 4/25/2015 Connect with Nature - Participate in Statewide Volunteer Day
Ariz. Phoenix 4/25/2015 6th Annual - Earth Day Phoenix 2015
Mich. St. Louis 4/25/2015 St. Louis Earth Day Festival
D.C. Washington 4/25/2015 Celebrate Earth Day at Kenilworth Gardens
Penn. Lebanon 4/26/2015 Creekside Water Festival
Ohio Worthington 5/9/2015 Green on the Green
N.Y. Bronx 5/16/2015 It's My Parks Day
R.I. Riverside 5/16/2015 Sabin Point Cleanup
Wash. Seattle 5/16/2015 You're Invited to the Gardening Party!
S.C. Folly Beach 5/17/2015 Join a beach sweep with Surfrider Charleston


James "Jim" Gowen is a change agent. Since taking on the complementary roles of vice president of Supply Chain Operations and chief sustainability officer for Verizon in 2009, he has enlisted more than 10,000 employees in 23 countries to help reduce the company’s environmental footprint.

Gowen oversees “green” initiatives across Verizon including the introduction of a carbon intensity metric, fuel and energy reduction, employee and supplier engagement, paper suppression, waste reduction and recycling. In his supply chain role, Gowen leads centralized operations with responsibility for more than $2.5 billion in annual through-put.

Gowen earned his master's degree in business administration from Long Island University and his bachelor's degree from Manhattanville College. He is located in Basking Ridge, New Jersey.