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November 7, 2003
NEW YORK -- Verizon Communications (NYSE: VZ) announced today that Charles R. Lee will retire as chairman of the Verizon Board of Directors, effective at the close of business on Dec. 31, 2003, and that CEO Ivan Seidenberg will succeed him in that role.
Under terms of an agreement announced at the time of the Bell Atlantic and GTE merger in 2000, Lee was to have served as non-executive chairman until June 30, 2004. However, Lee recommended moving up the leadership transition and exiting the Board earlier than planned based on the successful integration and operation of Verizon.
"Verizon has demonstrated it's on the right strategic path. Accelerating this transition underscores my confidence in both the company and Ivan's leadership," Lee said. "As I move to new challenges apart from Verizon, I know I leave the company in the very capable and experienced hands of Ivan and our other strong, experienced directors."
Seidenberg said, "Chuck Lee has been a strong leader and chairman, and we have benefited from his sound advice and counsel over the past several years. He has been a partner in a remarkable achievement: creating one of the most respected companies in the world. On behalf of our employees, customers and shareholders, I thank him for his contributions and wish him and his family health and happiness in the years ahead."
Verizon Communications Inc.
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