Longtime Verizon executive Walden to leave the company in February 2018

MarniWalden
Marni Walden. (Verizon)

Longtime Verizon executive Marni Walden will leave the carrier in February 2018.

Walden, who currently serves as executive vice president and president of Verizon’s Global Media business, will move into a strategic advisor role at the end of December. She will continue to report to Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam until leaving the company entirely early next year.

Walden started her career in wireless more than 20 years ago.

“Marni helped build our wireless business, starting as a sales representative in a store, and grew into an inspirational leader and role model for so many at Verizon,” McAdam said in a press release announcing the move. “She has most recently spearheaded Verizon’s entry into global digital media and telematics and will leave us in a strong competitive position.”

Indeed, Walden had been tasked with overseeing Verizon’s integration with Yahoo, and in June she was named head of the carrier’s Media and Telematics division in a significant restructuring.

Tim Armstrong will continue to be responsible for Oath following Walden’s departure, and the telematics business will report to John Stratton, executive vice president of global operations. Walden didn’t say what she plans to do after she leaves the company.

The news comes amid a series of front-office moves as the nation’s largest carrier continues to expand beyond its core wireless business into digital media and advertising as well as the IoT. Recent changes include the naming of former Ericsson CEO Hans Vestberg to head Verizon’s new Network and Technology team, and the hiring of former Ericsson North America chief Rima Qureshi to take the helm as new executive vice president and chief strategy officer.

“The executives Verizon has brought in seem to line up well with the big bets Verizon has made—5G, IoT, content and digital advertising,” Mark Lowenstein, a former Verizon executive turned analyst, told FierceWireless recently. “The profiles of these hires also show that Verizon wants to enhance its technology, market and deal-making capabilities.”