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Diego and Diana close out Hispanic Heritage Month live from NYC. Plus, a full news rundown.

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Happy Friday! Today on Up To Speed, host Diana Alvear shared the following updates:

Up To Speed weekly recap

There were lots of great episodes this week, so be sure to check out any you may have missed.

Monday: We celebrated International Day of the Girl by launching our Women’s CoLab in partnership with so many great companies to support women in the workplace.

Tuesday: The Ardine brothers finished their walk across America and we were there live as they made it to San Francisco. They spent seven months on the road and went through 12 pairs of shoes all in support of small businesses.

Thursday: Craig gave us an update on our COVID-19 policies.

Closing Hispanic Heritage Month

Today, Diana reported live from one of our stores in the heart of midtown Manhattan. She introduced a special guest and fellow member of our Latinx community: Chief Marketing Officer and proud Argentinian Diego Scotti.

Diego discussed how being Argentino has shaped his life and work and the enormous value he feels that Latinx members of the V Team bring to the company. “I’ve now lived in the United States over half my life,” said Diego. “It’s an amazing privilege to combine the culture of your home country with the culture of America.”

He also gave a big shout out to SOMOS, our employee resource group dedicated to highlighting the culture and community of our Latinx teammates while improving their career opportunities. Did you know that any V Teamer can join the group?

And before you ask, we’ll answer: that colorful t-shirt that Diego and Diana were sporting is the new SOMOS shirt, now available in our Brand Shop.

Diversity and Inclusion update

Diego, who recently gave the keynote address at AdColor, shared some of the milestones we’ve reached when it comes to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) including the following:

Attracting and retaining diverse talent

  • Women make up 51% of the Verizon marketing and agency teams, which exceeds the U.S. census benchmark of 47%.
  • 49% of new hires in Q3 were people of color and 59% were female.
  • AdFellows is on its 5th class and has become the preeminent internship program in the industry, with 17 agency and five brand partners.

Creating a diverse supply chain

  • We promised to spend 30% of our production budget on diverse suppliers and have already hit 50% this year.
  • We hosted the first Verizon Black-Owned Media Summit in May and our media investment with Black-owned businesses increased to $14.3M against our $25M target and we are on-track to hit our target this year.

Eliminating bias in our creative

  • We’ve been tracking the accurate portrayals of women and girls in our work since 2016 with #seeher’s Gender Equality Measure (GEM). According to the latest GEM report, Verizon’s score was 102, above the brand average of 99.

Creating responsible content policies

  • We achieved 100% participation for both internal Verizon and agency teams on our anti-bias training, ensuring our entire Marketing team has the tools to fight biases.

Upcoming campaigns

Diego also discussed our “Everyone deserves better” campaign and our Up Carrier strategy. “Every carrier can say they are the best. They can even say they are the un-carrier, but we are, in many ways, the Up Carrier,” explained Diego. “When a customer comes into our store, they know they’re going to get quality at Verizon. That’s why we’re saying ‘Everyone deserves better.’”

Ten-digit dialing/988

Mandatory ten-digit dialing is coming soon to many area codes to get ready for the launch of the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.. In July of next year, you’ll be able to dial 988 — just 3 digits — to reach the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. For that to happen, all wireless and landline customers in 82 area codes across 36 states must include the area code on all local calls for mandatory ten-digit dialing starting October 24.

If you have any numbers pre-programmed in your phone, fax machine or any other device, they must now include the area code.

To learn more, check out the essentials of ten-digit dialing, including the list of 82 area codes and Frequently Asked Questions, on

Candlelight vigil

Last night at the National Mall in Washington, D.C., VP of Public Sector Sales Maggie Hallbach and Manager of Public Safety Outreach Greg Cappetta participated in the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund Candlelight Vigil. The annual event honors officers who die in the line of duty.

The event also featured Verizon’s communications trailer known as Big Red. It’s a massive mobile hub for first-responders with 24 individual work spaces, charging stations, laptops, satellite equipment and more. While we look forward to celebrating National First Responders Day on October 28, Verizon’s dedication to first-responders remains a year-round commitment.

Women in Business Sales Awards

Great news today from the Verizon Business Group as 16 of our Verizon Connect sales employees have been named finalists in the 2021 European Women in Sales Awards. These awards recognize the achievements of women in sales roles and help to encourage diversity and new talent in the workplace. Congratulations to all winners!

A Visionary in BlueJeans

The most important enabler of hybrid work in the future will be how we continue to innovate video collaboration. That’s why it’s so exciting that BlueJeans was named a Visionary by the 2021 Gartner Magic Quadrant for Meeting Solutions for the fifth year in a row. The team continues to innovate, rolling out the two- and three-dimensional virtual space called Spaces.

Introducing a new Motorola Edge

Resident gadget guru George Koroneos walked us through all the awesome new features of the Motorola Edge 5G UW. We’re talking scary super fast downloads, low lag, bigger camera pixels, more powerful processors, faster battery charging and expanded Ready For capabilities. You’ll even be able to tap into our super-fast 5G C-band spectrum once it’s available. Check out the latest episode of George Talks Tech.

New retail location in Nashville

As we mark Employee Appreciation Week for Retail, we also celebrate the opening of a new Verizon store in Nashville. General Manager Marquise Anderson said his first job was at a restaurant on 8th Avenue, less than a mile away from our new location in the Melrose neighborhood. Not only have things come full circle for Marquise in his hometown, he’s also excited to help Verizon rock Music City.

SOMOS panel

Closing out today’s episode, SOMOS sponsor Ronan Dunne led a powerful discussion with four Latinx V Teamers talking about their experiences as first-generation Americans.

If you have any questions, email them to

Click here for a transcript of the webcast.

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