NEW YORK - Verizon's legal department is an outstanding example of corporate diversity, according to the Minority Corporate Counsel Association. The group today will honor the company's General Counsel William Barr for his commitment to diversity by naming Verizon an Employer of Choice.
The association will present the award at its annual Northeast Region Diversity Dinner in New York. Barr is one of four executives of corporate legal departments in the Northeast to be honored.
"We're pleased to recognize Bill Barr for his exceptional leadership in diversity," said Veta Richardson, Minority Corporate Counsel Association executive director. "His commitment to creating an inclusive work environment in which individuals are valued for their diversity is a strong example of the standard that we'd like to see throughout the legal profession."
The Employer of Choice Award is designed to spotlight industry leaders who have a commitment to diversity and who succeed in creating and maintaining an inclusive corporate legal department.
The Minority Corporate Counsel Association is a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting the hiring, retention and promotion of minority attorneys in corporate law departments.
Under Barr's leadership, Verizon's legal group formed a department-wide diversity council to serve as a resource on diversity issues, including mentoring, training and leadership development. The council implemented diversity initiatives for communication, education, leadership, employment and senior leader accountability.
The initiatives, which are tied directly to Verizon's company-wide diversity strategy, have helped increase the number of women and minorities at all levels within the legal department. Currently, 12 percent of the department's attorneys are minorities and 33 percent are female.
Barr continues to encourage his team consider to a diverse pool of qualified, high-performance, high-potential employees for promotions or hiring opportunities.
Barr, a former United States attorney general, has served as executive vice president and general counsel of Verizon and its predecessor GTE since 1994.
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 135.1 million access line equivalents and 30.3 million Verizon Wireless customers. Verizon is also the largest directory publisher in the world. With more than $67 billion in annual revenues and approximately 241,000 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.