CHICAGO, IL — Mike Ritter, vice president of marketing and sales operations for Verizon Wireless' Midwest Area and a resident of Wilmette, Ill., has been named to the board of directors of Prevent Child Abuse America, the preeminent national organization focused on preventing child maltreatment before it occurs.
"Mike has a deep commitment to children and families, and he undoubtedly will play an integral role in our prevention efforts for years to come," said Judith Rényi, president and chief executive officer of Chicago-based Prevent Child Abuse America. "Already, he has been instrumental in our building a strong new partnership with Verizon Wireless, which is committed to preventing violence in our homes and communities. With Mike's leadership on our board, we can make even more of a difference for children in Illinois and the Midwest."
Before joining Verizon Wireless' Midwest Area in 2002, Ritter served on the board of Prevent Child Abuse America's Virginia Chapter in 2000 and 2001, while president of Verizon Wireless' Virginia Region.
"Like Verizon Wireless, Prevent Child Abuse America is passionate about preventing violence in our homes and communities," said Ritter. "Our relationship with Prevent Child Abuse America is a natural extension of our HopeLineSM program, which raised $800,000 last year alone to help victims of domestic violence."
Through its award-winning HopeLine program, Verizon Wireless collects no-longer-used wireless phones and equipment from any vendor. Most of the donated phones and equipment are refurbished and sold with proceeds going to support domestic violence awareness and prevention programs. Any remaining phones are recycled in an environmentally friendly way.
The HopeLine program has evolved to include outreach to high school and college students to help them recognize and reject violent, abusive relationships.
"Prevent Child Abuse America has been an outspoken advocate of this vital issue for 30 years," Ritter added. "Its work is so important because it addresses the problem of domestic violence where it can have the most impact-with children who are most vulnerable yet most amenable to positive changes." "I am privileged to have the opportunity to contribute my time and talents to its worthy endeavors."
About Verizon Wireless
Verizon Wireless owns and operates the nation's most reliable wireless network, serving 43.8 million voice and data customers. Headquartered in Bedminster, N.J., Verizon Wireless is a joint venture of Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) and Vodafone (NYSE and LSE: VOD). Find more information on the Web at www.verizonwireless.com. To receive broadcast-quality video footage and high-resolution stills of Verizon Wireless operations, log on to the Verizon Wireless Multimedia Library at www.verizonwireless.com/multimedia.
About Prevent Child Abuse America
Engaging communities in the important work of strengthening families and valuing children are the core values of the network of national, state and local organizations that comprise Prevent Child Abuse America. For more than 30 years, Prevent Child Abuse America has been the leading national organization focused on preventing child maltreatment before it occurs. Headquartered in Chicago, the organization is widely known for its public awareness campaigns, prevention programs, advocacy efforts and research. For more information about child abuse and neglect prevention visit: www.preventchildabuse.org.