Former Verizon comms chief joins RLM Finsbury

RLM Finsbury has appointed former Verizon Communications CCO Peter Thonis as senior adviser.

NEW YORK: RLM Finsbury has appointed former Verizon Communications CCO Peter Thonis as senior adviser, a newly created position.

Thonis, who started at the agency on November 4, is responsible for counseling clients on corporate reputation, crisis management, and brand building issues. He is reporting to CEO Walter Montgomery in the part-time role.

“Having worked for major corporations throughout my career, I spent a lot of time on brand building and brand protecting,” said Thonis. “[RLM Finsbury] felt I could help by bringing my experience back to the table.”

In July, Thonis stepped down from his position at Verizon, where he had served since 2004 as the firm's first communications chief. Previously, he was SVP of external communications at Verizon from 2000 to 2005 after the company was formed from the merger of Bell Atlantic and GTE. Thonis had also worked as VP of external communications at GTE and had a 14-year career at IBM with several senior communications management positions.

“I have had a relationship with RLM Finsbury for decades and have an extremely high regard for the service they provide,” said Thonis. “When I retired from Verizon, I thought this role would be fun to sink my teeth into.”

Jim Gerace, previously VP of state government affairs for Verizon's New York region since 2010, succeeded Thonis as the company's CCO.

Thonis ranked No. 31 on the 2012 edition of PRWeek's Power List and No. 34 on the 2011 version.

Other recent hires at RLM Finsbury include James Thompson's appointment in August as an associate partner and Ned Potter's hire as SVP in March.

This story was updated on November 12 with quotes from Thonis. 

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