February 18, 2002

The Direct Marketing Association's (The DMA) Directo: Council for Hispanic Marketing will present Verizon Communications with its top corporate honor, the 2002 "Excellence in Hispanic Direct Marketing Company of the Year."

"This award celebrates Verizon's unique use of direct marketing tools for customer retention and continuous growth," said Maurice Herrera, vice president of sales, Hugo Dunhill Mailing Lists, Inc., and chair of The DMA Directo: Council for Hispanic Marketing. "Verizon is considered a leader in fostering workplace diversity and supporting community organizations that benefit Hispanics and other minorities."

Verizon created a highly successful marketing program aimed at Hispanic customers called La Plaza. The fundamental component of this program is La Voz de la Plaza, a Spanish-language publication, which is mailed to more than 200,000 recipients nationwide.

In addition, Verizon has been a strong advocate of workplace diversity. Through its Diversity and Leadership Initiative (DLI), Verizon strives for higher levels of retention, development, and promotion for its talented minority workforce. Verizon also provides training programs specifically designed for Hispanic, African-American, and Asian managers. It has been named to the lists of "America's 50 Best Companies for Minorities" (Fortune Magazine), "Top 50 Companies for Hispanic Professional Women" (LATINA Style Magazine), and "Top 25 Vendor Programs for Latinos" (Hispanic Magazine). And in 2001, the U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce honored Verizon as its "Corporation of the Year."

Verizon also supports numerous Hispanic organizations including:

· Hispanic Support Organization, a Verizon employee resource group, works with the company to identify high-potential, qualified Hispanic candidates suitable for promotion;

· Mi Escuelita, a grass-roots program based in Dallas, Tex. that donates scholarships to qualified Hispanic students across the country;

· The National Society of Hispanic MBAs;

· 100 Hispanic Women of Westchester;

· The National Council of LA RAZA (NCLR);

· The National Hispanic Corporate Council (NHCC) Symposium on Corporate Best Practices.

Each year, The DMA Directo: Council for Hispanic Marketing presents its "Excellence in Hispanic Direct Marketing Company of the Year" to a U.S.-based operation that displays at least 10 years of direct marketing experience; active involvement in direct marketing to Hispanics; significant contributions to the direct and interactive marketing industry and Hispanic marketplace through breakthrough creativity and/or professional achievement; and a dedicated commitment to the well-being of the marketplace at large through training and educating others in the field; and community involvement. This award is especially noteworthy as members of the Directo Council, who are peers of the organizations competing, choose the recipient.

The DMA Directo: Council for Hispanic Marketing is a professional member service organization that promotes effective, ethical use of direct marketing to the Hispanic market.

For more information at http://www.the-dma.org

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