PITTSBURGH - Shirley Risoldi, spokesperson for Bell Atlantic in western Pennsylvania since 1989, has announced her retirement, effective Oct. 15. Her responsibilities are being assumed by Sharon Shaffer, currently media relations manager for southeastern and northeastern Pennsylvania. Shaffer now is the primary Bell Atlantic news media contact in Pennsylvania.
"Shirley Risoldi has been an excellent voice and face of Bell Atlantic in Pittsburgh and the surrounding area," said Dan Whelan, Bell Atlantic-Pennsylvania president and CEO. "We will miss Shirley's talent and energy, and we wish her all the best.
"Sharon Shaffer brings a proven ability to meet the needs of the press in her present position, and she'll work very well with the western Pennsylvania media," he added.
Risoldi's retirement concludes a 36-year Bell Atlantic career that spanned a time of tremendous change in the telecommunications industry. A native of Honolulu, she began her telephone career as a customer service representative for the Hawaiian Telephone Co. before taking a similar position with C&P Telephone in Alexandria, Va. Risoldi moved to Pittsburgh in 1963 and held a number of assignments in the public relations department at Bell of Pennsylvania before becoming Bell Atlantic's western Pennsylvania spokesperson.
Risoldi will join her husband Matt at their home in Ocala, Fla.
A Pittsburgh native, Shaffer's Bell Atlantic career began in Bell of Pennsylvania's outside plant engineering department. She left the company to pursue personal and other business interests, moving to eastern Pennsylvania. Shaffer returned to Bell Atlantic in Philadelphia in 1979, where she worked in operations, product management and regulatory affairs before joining the public relations department. Shaffer was named Bell Atlantic spokesperson in Philadelphia in 1987.
Shaffer will maintain offices in Philadelphia and Pittsburgh.
The new Bell Atlantic (NYSE: BEL) is at the forefront of the new communications, information and entertainment industry. With 40 million telephone access lines and 5.5 million wireless customers worldwide, the corporation -- formed through the merger of Bell Atlantic and NYNEX -- is the premier provider of advanced wireline voice and data services in the eastern United States and a market leader in wireless services. Bell Atlantic also is the world's largest provider of directory information and one of the world's largest investors in high-growth global communications markets, with operations and investments in 21 countries.