Verizon Named One of Top Four Companies for Diversity in Magazine Survey

NEW YORK - For the third consecutive year, DiversityInc magazine has named Verizon one of the Top 50 Companies for Diversity. Verizon placed fourth overall and led all communications companies. Verizon also ranked in the top 10 in more categories than any other company surveyed. The final results will appear in the magazine's June/July issue.

DiversityInc said the number of companies competing for rankings doubled over last year, and the 2004 evaluation was the magazine's most in-depth analysis ever of corporate diversity. The publication said it examined each company's diversity practices in four key areas: CEO commitment, work force development, internal and external corporate communications and supplier diversity.

"Managing diversity is a competitive factor for any business, from sales and marketing to recruiting and retaining the best talent. Verizon earned its place on the list by demonstrating outstanding national leadership in every aspect of managing diversity," said Luke Visconti, partner/co-founder, DiversityInc.

DiversityInc named Verizon as one of the best companies in six lists within its Top 50: recruitment and retention of diverse employees; supplier diversity; African-Americans; Asian-Americans; Latinos; and gay, lesbian, bi-sexual and transgender employees.

Verizon's focus on diversity starts with Verizon CEO Ivan Seidenberg and other senior executives who emphasize to employees that diversity is an integral part of Verizon's business, influencing everything from work force development and supplier relationships to economic development and philanthropy.

The company measures diversity progress like any other business objective, holding executives accountable through incentives linked to short-term compensation.

Minority employees represent nearly 30 percent of Verizon's work force and hold almost 18 percent of top management positions. The company actively recruits diverse employees, forming strategic partnerships with colleges and universities, and professional and community-based organizations. A leader in the emerging market for broadband services, Verizon is grooming the next generation of diverse leaders to bring the benefits of new technology to homes and businesses across America. The company prepares its multicultural work force for career advancement through mentoring and leadership development programs like the Verizon Development and Leadership Initiative, which helps participants identify professional goals and network with Verizon executives.

Verizon spent $1.7 billion with diverse suppliers in 2003. The company encourages the growth of small business in a variety of ways. It forms strategic alliances with advocacy groups and chambers of commerce and encourages primary suppliers to increase use of diverse businesses as subcontractors. Additionally, through the Verizon Diversity Managers program, 20 minority-owned investment firms manage over $1 billion in committed Verizon pension and other assets.

Verizon Foundation, the company's philanthropic arm, supports organizations that serve multicultural communities. In 2003 the foundation provided $34 million, 45 percent of its total budget, to nonprofit organizations serving diverse communities.

Verizon Communications

A Fortune 20 company, Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) is one of the world's leading providers of communications services, with approximately $68 billion in annual revenues. Verizon companies are the largest providers of wireline and wireless communications in the United States. Verizon is also the largest directory publisher in the world, as measured by directory titles and circulation. Verizon's international presence includes wireline and wireless communications operations and investments, primarily in the Americas and Europe. For more information, visit www.verizon.com.


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