Peter Thonis is a seasoned strategic communications consultant who advises clients worldwide.
He is a partner at the Authentic Leadership Alliance and a senior advisor to Finsbury,
a strategic issues management firm based in New York and London. He has counseled organizations large and small, public and private -- including the White House – on myriad reputational issues.
Until July of 2013, Thonis was Chief Communications Officer (CCO) for Verizon, the $120 billion provider of telecommunications services. He was a long-standing member of the Verizon Leadership Council, the 12 senior-most executives of the company, responsible for developing and leading the implementation of Verizon's strategy and operations. As CCO, Thonis was responsible for all communications, stakeholder relations, crisis and brand management across the corporation. In his role for nearly nine years and Verizon's first CCO, Thonis led media relations strategy and execution, corporate-wide issues management, and executive and employee communications. Previously, Thonis was Senior Vice President of External Communications for Verizon, and helped make the new company known for its premier networks and innovative broadband solutions – now one of the most recognized names in America and a Fortune 11 company.
Prior to the creation of Verizon from the merger of Bell Atlantic and GTE in 2000, Thonis was Vice President of External Communications for GTE, a position he held since September 1997.
From 1995 to 1997, Thonis worked for BBN Corp, a pioneer in the creation and development of the Internet. There he served a dual role of Vice President of Communications and Vice President of Marketing until BBN was acquired by GTE.
Before joining BBN, Thonis spent 14 years with IBM, where he held several senior communications management positions, including Director of IBM's worldwide public relations for PC business units.
While at IBM, Thonis also led financial communications through the massive transformation of the company’s business model in the mid-1990s.
The International Association of Business Communicators named Thonis “Communicator of the Year”
in 2010 and 2011, a global recognition of Thonis’ innovative communications approaches and thought leadership.
Thonis serves on the board of NYC Outward Bound. He also is an adjunct professor of communications at New York University and a member of the Arthur W. Page Society, comprised of Chief Communications Officers from around the world.
Thonis has a bachelor's degree in Communications and English literature from Syracuse University and a master's degree in Journalism from the University of Missouri.