Setting a path for our future growth.

By: Raquel Wilson
Senior Manager, Corporate Communications

A special update on our latest leadership changes and celebrating Employee Appreciation Day.

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In today’s special edition of Up To Speed Live, Verizon Chairman and CEO Hans Vestberg joined Raquel to announce several leadership changes that will position Verizon for the next phase of growth. Additionally, today is Employee Appreciation Day, and Hans expressed his gratitude for the V Team and their contributions to Verizon.

Organizational Updates

Since December, Hans has been overseeing the Verizon Consumer Group, and by his own account, he’s been “truly enjoying the momentum we’ve been building in the Consumer Group.”

As part of today's leadership realignment, which was announced earlier this morning, three primary leadership shifts will be occurring:

  • Sowmyanarayan Sampath is taking the reins as EVP and CEO of Verizon Consumer Group
  • Kyle Malady is stepping into the role of EVP and CEO of Verizon Business Group
  • Joe Russo will now assume the role of EVP and President of Global Networks and Technology

Hans noted that all three of these leadership shifts are internal, which excites him because it’s a powerful reminder of the robust “bench strength we have” as a company. These transitions will begin immediately, but Hans assured V Teamers that there should be “no drop of momentum” in any area and that “with these leaders, we are accelerating our strategy.”

In addition to these changes, Hans announced that Chief Financial Officer Matt Ellis–the longest-serving CFO in Verizon history–has decided to pursue opportunities outside of Verizon.

Hans invited Matt to the floor, where he gave a message to the V Team: “It’s been a tremendous privilege and honor to serve in this role in such a fantastic organization, and especially the Finance team, said Matt. Tony Skiadas is stepping in as leader of the Finance organization, while Mary-Lee Stillwell has been appointed Senior Vice President & Controller–both of whom Matt said have “great experience in this space,” a sentiment that Hans agreed with. And as for where you’ll be finding Matt after his departure on May 1? “I’ll be somewhere on the beach,” joked Matt–a much-needed vacation after nearly 30 years of not taking one.

Employee Appreciation Day

To close out, Hans noted that today is Employee Appreciation Day, and he thanked the V Team on his behalf, as well as on behalf of the executive leadership team and the company board. “Sincerely, from the bottom of my heart, thank you for all the hard work you’re doing” supporting the vision and mission of Verizon, said Hans. “Wherever you are” in the business, “you’re a critical person” to the company.

Stock Together

This Employee Appreciation Day, we also had exciting updates on Stock Together, our broad-based equity award program. Hans brought Chief Human Resources Officer Sam Hammock to the stage, where she teased several announcements to come later today in a special edition of Up To Speed.

Dinner-Table Talk

If there’s one thing to know about Hans, it’s his love for dinner-table talks. And when it comes to today’s announcements, Hans had three things he encouraged V Teamers to share with their friends and families: the strength of our leadership, the acceleration of our strategy and lastly, a deep appreciation for V Teamers.

And as for how our CEO feels about today’s announcements? You can tell your loved ones that “Hans is very excited.”

If you have any questions, email them to

Click here for a transcript of the webcast.

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About the author:

Raquel Wilson is a former adfellow who now enjoys keeping the V Team up to date on all things Verizon as a host of Up To Speed. You can always rely on her to have a good book recommendation and a latte she probably paid way too much for.

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