Working Mother Magazine Again Names Verizon to 'Best Companies for Multicultural Women' List

NEW YORK - Verizon Communications, for the second year in a row, has been named to Working Mother Magazine's Best Companies for Multicultural Women, a list of 20 companies with cutting-edge policies and practices that support African-American, Asian-American, Latina and Native-American Women in the workplace.

This year, Working Mother gave the most weight to the representation, recruitment and retention of women of color.  The magazine analyzed the workforce profiles of companies, including the number of women of color, women in top positions and top earners; programs for women of color; and work/life programs such as childcare, elder care and time off following childbirth.

Michelle Minus Swittenberg, Verizon vice president of sales and marketing for the New York region, is featured on the cover of the June issue of Working Mother, which lists and profiles the 2007 Best Companies for Multicultural Women. Swittenberg joined a predecessor company of Verizon in 1989. She lives in New Jersey with her husband and son.

Working Mother's feature on the 2007 Best Companies for Multicultural Women also includes Magda Yrizarry, Verizon's vice president of workplace culture, diversity and compliance; and Rose Stuckey Kirk, Verizon vice president - corporate employee communications.

"At Verizon, we're proud of the fact that our workforce reflects the communities we serve," said Yrizarry. "Seeking out top talent from a diverse pool of candidates and supporting the development of all our employees is an important part of Verizon's strategy to win in a global marketplace. We're honored to be among the best companies for multicultural women, and we're proud to have one of Verizon's own serve as an example of a successful working mother." 

To ensure that women from a variety of cultures and backgrounds are prepared for career advancement, Verizon offers leadership development programs that provide a clear understanding of performance requirements and what it takes to become a leader at the company. Hundreds of women take part annually in these programs at Verizon.

Working Mother Magazine Editor-in-Chief Suzanne Riss said, "Verizon is making a difference in the way corporate America views diversity and its multicultural employees. They're holding managers accountable for helping workplace diversity thrive. We have the good fortune to live in one of the most culturally rich countries in the world, and Verizon recognizes that this richness is a workplace asset. Verizon is truly leading by example."

To apply for the list, companies from across the country provided Working Mother with detailed information - including the number of women of color employed and hired in 2006 and the number who hold top positions. Verizon Communications and Verizon Wireless, the corporation's wireless business group, filed a joint entry.

In 2007, Verizon Communications was also named to DiversityInc magazine's Top 50 Companies for Diversity list, a list on which Verizon has earned a Top10 ranking in each of the last four years. Also this year, Verizon was honored by the Women's Business Enterprise National Council, which named Verizon among the top American corporations for women's business enterprises.  Verizon's goal is to increase year-over-year spending with minority, women and disabled-veteran-owned business enterprises, which did nearly $2.6 billion worth of business with Verizon in 2006.

Also this year, Conceive Magazine named Verizon one of the top 50 companies for fertility and adoption benefits, noting that these top companies "deserve to be recognized for their generous family-building benefits."

To be a leader in the delivery of broadband and other communication innovations to wireline and wireless customers, Verizon depends on the unique talents, and experiences of all employees in an increasingly competitive marketplace.

Women and minorities account for nearly 44 percent of Verizon's top management positions. Diversity is part of  Verizon's business strategy across all lines of business and functions -- from human resources and supplier relations, to marketing and philanthropy.  Through its philanthropic arm, the Verizon Foundation, Verizon contributed more than $31 million in 2006 to charitable causes and organizations that serve women and minority communities across the country.

Verizon Wireless is a recognized corporate leader for its commitment to preventing domestic violence and raising awareness of the issue. Verizon Wireless encourages consumers to recycle no-longer-used wireless phones and batteries by dropping them off at any Verizon Wireless Communications store. This is part of the company's HopeLine® phone recycling program, which has collected nearly 4 million no-longer-used wireless phones and accessories and more than 200,000 pounds of rechargeable batteries, enabling more than $3.5 million in donations to local domestic violence agencies since 2001.

About Verizon
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 60.7 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 has a diverse workforce of more than 238,000 and last year generated consolidated operating revenues of more than $88 billion.  For more information, visit www.verizon.com.