Jeannie Diefenderfer

United States of America


Paris, France


Silvia de Vaan


Founder and CEO, courageNpurpose, LLC

Jeannie is currently an independent director on the board of Windstream Holdings (NASDAQ: WIN), chair of the Accenture Network Advisory Council, an advisor to Sedona Systems, and vice chair and a trustee of Tufts University. She previously served on the boards of MRV Communications, Westell Technologies, Citizens Funds, and the Ms. Foundation for Women.

During her 28-year career at Verizon Communications, she held a range of roles, including SVP of Global Engineering & Panning, chief procurement officer, and SVP of Customer Care. She managed organizations with up to 10,000 staff, operating budgets up to $12 billion and capital programs over $10 billion. She ran and expanded the world’s largest voice and data network to connect six continents and shifted the complexities of customer care into a strategic growth driver.

Along the way, Jeannie celebrated the human side of business. She initiated a consortium of Fortune 100 companies to support procurement from women and minority suppliers and served on Employee Resource Groups including the Minority Multicultural Association of NYNEX, Women’s Association of Verizon Employees, and the Asian Focus Group.

As the founder and CEO of courageNpurpose, LLC, Jeannie advises boards and CEOs to help drive operational scalability and business efficacy.

Her work won her recognition from business and industry groups, including Outstanding 50 Asian Americans in Business and Asian Women in Business Corporate Leadership Award. She was listed in Crain’s New York Business “40 under 40” publication and was a member of the 1999 class of the David Rockefeller Fellows Program.

Jeannie holds a Bachelor of Science degree in chemical engineering from Tufts University and an MBA from Babson College. A native of South Korea, she immigrated to the U.S. at age 13.