NEW YORK - Bruce Gordon, president of Verizon's Retail Markets Group, is one of the "50 Most Powerful Black Executives in America," according to Fortune magazine. Gordon, a Camden, N.J. native, ranked sixth on the publication's list of top African-American executives. The complete list appears in Fortune's July 22 issue.
In its cover story, Fortune said it looked beyond company market caps, revenues, profits and individual titles to compile the list of the "powerful 50." It sought business leaders who are "wielding power and putting it to active use." While the list includes CEOs of Fortune 500 companies, Fortune also identified many other influential men and women who are not as well known. "That's not just a list of powerful black execs, but a list of powerful executives period," the magazine points out.
As the president of one of Verizon's largest business units, Gordon is responsible for $25 billion in annual revenues and oversees a workforce of 34,000 employees in 31 states and the District of Columbia. He and his team serve more than 44 million residential, small-business and long-distance customers nationwide.
"This is a well deserved honor," said Ivan Seidenberg, Verizon CEO. "Bruce's leadership, involvement and support have helped Verizon to reach new heights. His ability to anticipate and meet the needs of our customers has made him an invaluable member of the Verizon team."
Gordon began his 34-year career in telecommunications as a management trainee with Bell of Pennsylvania, now part of Verizon, and worked his way up through the ranks. He sits on several corporate boards including the Southern Company and Office Depot; serves as trustee of Gettysburg College, the Alvin Ailey Dance Foundation and Lincoln Center; and is a member of the Executive Leadership Council, a nationwide professional organization for senior-level African-American executives. In 1998, Black Enterprise magazine named him "Executive of the Year."
Gordon, who credits leaders like the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. with opening the doors of opportunity, has spent much of his career mentoring minority employees. His efforts, coupled with those of other Verizon executives, underscore the company's goal of ensuring diversity throughout its business activities. Minority employees now comprise nearly 30 percent of Verizon's workforce and hold 16 percent of the company's top management positions.
Gordon's recognition is the latest in a string of Verizon diversity honors. For the fifth time, Fortune recently named Verizon to its list of the "50 Best Companies for Minorities," and earlier this year Savoy magazine presented Verizon with the Excellence in Diversity Award for Executive Leadership in 2002. The National Minority Supplier Development Council awarded Verizon CEO Ivan Seidenberg, its 2002 Leadership Award for his strong commitment and dedication to building alliances with minority businesses. Last month, the Hispanic Association on Corporate Responsibility listed Verizon's Development and Leadership Initiative, a program for developing the leadership potential of the company's minority employees, among Corporate Best Practices for 2002.
Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) is one of the world's leading providers of communications services. Verizon companies are the largest providers of wireline and wireless communications in the United States, with 133.8 million access line equivalents and approximately 29.6 million wireless customers. Verizon is also the largest directory publisher in the world. With more than $67 billion in annual revenues and nearly 248,000 employees, Verizon's global presence extends to more than 40 countries in the Americas, Europe, Asia and the Pacific. For more information on Verizon, visit www.verizon.com.