The Institute - March 2021 - TI-4

Later she joined Bell Atlantic, which merged with GTE to
form Verizon.
Today the IEEE member is executive director of emerging
technologies with Verizon's technology and product development group in Waltham, Mass.
McManus also mentors the company's young engineers,
especially women. In addition, she works with professionaldevelopment programs run by Verizon and IEEE to connect
with young professionals and help them reach career goals.
She was profiled in the 2016 book The Internet of Women:
Accelerating Culture Change, which highlights standouts in
science, technology, engineering, and math who are making historic contributions to their field.

Jean McManus

The Woman
Behind Verizon's
Big Bet on



MAR 2021


ean McManus seemed to be destined
to work for Verizon. After all, every telephone company she worked for in her 24year career was eventually acquired by or
merged with Verizon.
Her first job out of college was with Contel, which was acquired by GTE in 1990.




McManus was inspired to pursue engineering by her father,
who was an electrical engineer. She received a bachelor's
degree in electrical engineering in 1987 from Duke University,
in Durham, N.C. She then joined Contel as a systems engineer
and later transitioned to security engineer.
After the company was acquired by GTE, McManus decided
to return to school, and she earned a master's degree in electrical engineering in 1993 and a Ph.D. in systems engineering
in 1996 from the University of Pennsylvania, in Philadelphia.
For her doctoral dissertation, she focused on the delivery of
video over networks.
She then joined Bell Atlantic in Arlington, Va., and worked
as an engineer on the company's Video Delivery Through
Networks project. The company was conducting a trial in
Toms River, N.J., that was related to her dissertation, and " it
was a perfect fit, " she says.
When Bell Atlantic refocused its efforts on broadband and
DSL, McManus became the lead architect in building the company's DSL architecture.
" It was really exciting, " she says, " because at that time, most
of my colleagues were experts on narrowband technologies.
Meanwhile, I was more familiar with broadband technologies. "
McManus was able to define the architecture of broadband
technologies such as customer premises equipment (Wi-Fi
routers, cable TV boxes, and telephone sets), edge routers
and switches, and associated protocols, she says.
Four years after she joined Bell Atlantic, it merged with
GTE to form Verizon.
After the merger, McManus was named a Verizon Fellow-
which, she says, provided her with a great opportunity to
work with the company's leaders. She began working in the
network architecture department and, in 2014, was promoted
to executive director of emerging technologies. She leads a
proof-of-concept lab and is responsible for product-focused
technology innovation.

The Institute - March 2021

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