Verizon Business Co-Sponsors 2007 Global Marathon Encouraging Young Women to Discover Engineering and Technology

BASKING RIDGE, N.J. - Verizon Business has teamed with the National Engineers Week Foundation and Lenovo to produce the third annual Global Marathon For, By and About Women in Engineering event, highlighting the increased opportunities for women in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

The event, accessible via the Internet, by telephone, or both, will cover a 24-hour period, from 12 p.m. Eastern time March 22 to 12 p.m. Eastern time March 23. Women of all ages can hear speakers from a variety of technology backgrounds and careers speak in 30- to 60-minute increments on numerous topics.

Verizon Business will use its IP-based global network to provide the underlying technology for the Global Marathon, enabling women from around the world to access more than 40 voice conferences, webcasts and net conferences.

Astronaut Sally Ride and Fran O'Sullivan, senior vice president of the product group at Lenovo, a personal computer company, will kick off the event. 

"What does it take to have a successful career in science and technology? A fascination with how things work, an orientation toward problem solving, and a willingness to surround yourself with people who understand things you don't," said Judy Spitz, Verizon Business senior vice president and chief information officer. "The Global Marathon celebrates successful women working with technology and gives young women real-life role models who are currently working in engineering and related disciplines."

Several Verizon executives and employees will host forums to share information, increase awareness of educational and career opportunities for women, and dispel myths about women in technical careers.

In the event's final hour, Spitz will lead a discussion with young women currently attending high school and graduate school on preparing for tomorrow's challenging workplace.

The Verizon Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Verizon, is supporting the event. "Using technology to facilitate learning opportunities such as the 2007 Global Marathon is one of the primary missions of the Verizon Foundation," said Foundation President Patrick Gaston. "Through our Thinkfinity digital learning platform, students, teachers and community programs have access to rich, interactive, educational resources that engage students, pique curiosity and help develop the critical thinking skills needed to compete for high-tech jobs in the 21st century."

Thinkfinity, which can be found at www.thinkfinity.org, is the Verizon Foundation's signature digital learning platform, combining authoritative, standards-based K-12 educational content and robust professional development with research and evidence-based resources and practices for literacy across the lifespan, all at no cost.

To reach as many young women as possible, Verizon Business Community Ambassadors will promote the Global Marathon in their local areas. These Verizon Business employees serve as ambassadors in communities around the United States to support the company's community investment focus on innovation in education.

About Verizon Business
Verizon Business, a unit of Verizon Communications (NYSE: VZ), is a leading provider of advanced communications and information technology (IT) solutions to large business and government customers worldwide.  Combining unsurpassed global network reach with advanced technology and professional service capabilities, Verizon Business delivers innovative and seamless business solutions to customers around the world.  For more information, visit www.verizonbusiness.com.

About Verizon Foundation
The Verizon Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Verizon Communications, is committed to improving literacy and K-12 education; fostering awareness and prevention of domestic violence; and promoting the use of technology in health-care delivery.  In 2006, the foundation awarded more than $69 million in grants to nonprofit agencies in the United States and abroad. The foundation also matched charitable donations from Verizon employees and retirees, resulting in $29 million in combined contributions. Under the foundation's Verizon Volunteer initiative, one of the nation's largest employee-volunteer programs, company employees and retirees have also contributed nearly 3 million hours of community service since Verizon's inception in 2000. For more information on the foundation, visit www.verizon.com/foundation.