NEW YORK - Verizon's commitment to corporate responsibility has been recognized by Corporate Responsibility Officer magazine and The Big Money, a Web site that focuses on aspects of economics and money.
CRO magazine ranked Verizon No. 32 on the publication's 100 Best Corporate Citizens List. Verizon is the only telecommunications company on the list, which the publication announced at a news conference Friday (March 6).
Verizon received its highest CRO score for philanthropy, ranking 9th in that category. In 2008, the Verizon Foundation, the company's philanthropic arm, awarded $68 million in grants to nonprofit organizations in the U.S. and abroad.
CRO compiled by the 100 Best Corporate Citizens List by using public information to evaluate the 1,000 companies in the Russell 1000 index of large-cap companies, ranking them on their performance in seven key areas: environment, climate change, human rights, philanthropy, employee relations, finance and corporate governance.
Over the past nine years, the three-year total returns - taking into account stock and dividend return - of the companies that have been named to CRO's 100 Best Corporate Citizens List have exceeded by an average of 26 percent the returns of the other companies in the Russell 1000 index, according to the magazine.
In a separate honor, Verizon ranked 40th on The Big Money's Socially Responsible Investing Stock Screener, out of 500 publicly traded companies in the U.S. IW Financial, which specializes in environmental, social and governance issues, was contracted by The Big Money to compile the list and rank companies according to social responsibility criteria including the companies' policies covering gays and lesbians, the environment and treatment of employees.
Verizon is committed to offering its employees a great place to work, providing them with opportunities for both professional and personal development. Over the past few years, the company's employee development, education and training budget has totaled approximately $1 billion.
[Note: Photos of examples of Verizon's corporate responsibility efforts are available at http://verizon.mediaseed.tv.]
A responsible steward of the environment, Verizon's energy-conservation, waste-prevention and recycling efforts have yielded an estimated average reduction of 332,295 metric tons in greenhouse-gas emissions over the last five years. That's equivalent to nearly 61,000 cars not driven for one year. In 2008 alone, Verizon:
- Reduced paper usage by 2,154 tons as a result of paper-free billing initiatives, saving nearly 52,000 trees.
- Doubled the size of its hybrid sedan fleet by adding another 100 sedans used in metropolitan areas across the country.
- Mandated that all new network equipment be at least 20 percent more efficient than prior technologies. Reducing the energy consumed by the equipment also reduces the heat it generates, which, in turn, reduces the cost of providing air conditioning where the equipment is stored. More information is available at www.verizonnebs.com.
Verizon is committed to putting its customers first by providing excellent service and great communications experiences. To keep that commitment, the company emphasizes four core values: integrity, respect, performance excellence and accountability.
Verizon's networks help address many pressing social issues. For example, Verizon's ultra-fast broadband can help reduce energy consumption, and reduce medical errors while driving down costs in the health care system by facilitating an interoperable system of electronic records.
The company's technology also assists people with disabilities, the largest minority in America. Nearly 20 years ago, Verizon became the first telecommunications company to adopt a set of Universal Design Principles, which are now an integral part of the product design process throughout the company and have led to a number of products and services offerings such as:
- Products with Braille.
- Phones with large buttons, and buttons with photos to help those with cognitive difficulties.
- Phones operated by remote control for people with physical disabilities.
- Expanded videophone services to reach more hearing-impaired customers in the New England, New York and Potomac regions.
About the Verizon Foundation
The Verizon Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Verizon Communications, supports the advancement of literacy and K-12 education through its free educational Web site, Thinkfinity.org, and fosters awareness and prevention of domestic violence. In 2008, the Verizon Foundation awarded more than $68 million in grants to nonprofit agencies in the U.S. and abroad. It also matched the charitable donations of Verizon employees and retirees, resulting in an additional $26 million in combined contributions to nonprofits. Through Verizon Volunteers, one of the nation's largest employee volunteer programs, Verizon employees and retirees have volunteered more than 3 million hours of community service since 2000. For more information on the foundation, visit www.verizonfoundation.org.
Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ), headquartered in New York, is a leader in delivering broadband and other wireline and wireless communication innovations to mass market, business, government and wholesale customers. Verizon Wireless operates America's most reliable wireless network, serving more than 80 million customers nationwide. Verizon's Wireline operations include Verizon Business, which delivers innovative and seamless business solutions to customers around the world, and Verizon Telecom, which brings customers the benefits of converged communications, information and entertainment services over the nation's most advanced fiber-optic network. A Dow 30 company, Verizon employs a diverse workforce of nearly 224,000 and last year generated consolidated operating revenues of more than $97 billion. For more information, visit www.verizon.com.