DEF 14A 1 tm223573-1_def14a.htm DEF 14A tm223573-1_def14a - none - 29.171997s
UNITED STATES
SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION
Washington, D.C. 20549
SCHEDULE 14A
Proxy Statement Pursuant to Section 14(a) of
the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (Amendment No.   )
Filed by the Registrant   ☐
Filed by a Party other than the Registrant   ☐
Check the appropriate box:

Preliminary Proxy Statement

Confidential, for Use of the Commission Only (as permitted by Rule 14a-6(e)(2))

Definitive Proxy Statement

Definitive Additional Materials

Soliciting Material under §240.14a-12
Ribbon Communications Inc.
(Name of Registrant as Specified in Its Charter)
(Name of Person(s) Filing Proxy Statement, if other than the Registrant)
Payment of Filing Fee (Check the appropriate box):

No fee required.

Fee paid previously with preliminary materials.

Fee computed on table in exhibit required by Item 25(b) per Exchange Act Rules 14a6(i)(1) and 0-11.

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We are Ribbon.
$845M
2021 total revenue
1,000+
customers
140+
countries we serve
1,000+
patents
$195M
R&D spend (23% of total revenue)
3,600+
global employees
2017
established
Ribbon Communications (Nasdaq: RBBN) is a global provider of real-time communications software and IP Optical networking solutions to service providers, enterprises and critical infrastructure sectors.
We engage deeply with our customers, helping them modernize their networks for improved competitive positioning and business outcomes in today’s smart, always-on and data-hungry world.
Our innovative, end-to-end solutions portfolio delivers unparalleled scale, performance and agility, including core to edge software-centric solutions, cloud-native platforms, leading-edge security and analytics tools, along with IP and optical networking solutions for broadband and mobile networks.
To learn more about Ribbon visit rbbn.com.
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Our Culture
At Ribbon, our culture defines us. Our relentless focus on the customer, coupled with our entrepreneurial spirit, has solidified our position as one of the market-leading solutions leaders in the global telecommunications industry. Our culture’s foundation is based on our core values of innovation, imagination, execution and ethical responsibility. These shared values provide the platform for our employees, allowing them to share a global connection while simultaneously celebrating our diversity.

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Dear Stockholder:
Reflecting back on 2021, I am encouraged by the progress Ribbon has made on our strategy to establish ourselves as a significant supplier of IP Networking and Optical transport solutions to major telecom carriers throughout the globe. With major new wins with Service Providers such as Rogers, Optus, Singtel, MTN Group, Taiwan Mobile, Viaero Wireless, and others, we have broadened our foundation and established industry credibility.
The industry backdrop has never been stronger. Investment in fiber networks is increasing dramatically to support expansion of consumer internet services and to provide the backbone needed to enable next generation wireless 5G services. Consumer and Enterprise adoption of video collaboration platforms is revolutionizing how people communicate, and putting unprecedented demand on the network. These are the market trends we are investing around and positioning the company for long term growth.
Despite many accomplishments throughout the year, we were disappointed with our financial results in 2021. Escalating supply chain issues impacted revenue and profitability in the second half of the year, and we expect some of these effects to continue through most of 2022. It has also taken longer to convert our new IP Optical customer wins into sustainable revenue, while the investment that is needed to obtain and execute on the wins and develop our roadmap is an immediate investment.
Looking forward into 2022, we have a strong funnel of opportunities, and a growing list of new strategic wins that have significant long-term growth potential. In the critical North America region, we grew IP Optical sales by 164% last year — and we are targeting greater than 50% growth again in 2022. Other regions such as Japan, India and Australia are also expected to contribute to our projected 10%+ growth outlook for the year in this business.
To capitalize on these opportunities, we have been increasing our R&D intensity in the IP Optical Networks portfolio. We see significant opportunity for differentiation particularly around the software aspects of our products, and have refined our roadmap through extensive discussions with both existing and potential new customers. Our strategy is to lower total cost of ownership and reduce operational complexity by enabling a more open ecosystem and network architecture, with an end-to-end suite of products. We believe this is key to our differentiation and how we win.
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In our Cloud & Edge segment, the secure VoIP business continues to be a great foundation for the company. We expect continued investment by our Service Provider customers as they modernize their voice networks and address their aging infrastructure, also helping them meet increasing environmental and security regulatory requirements.
The backdrop of accelerating usage of platforms such as Microsoft Teams and Zoom provide an excellent growth opportunity for our Cloud & Edge business. As Service Providers, Enterprises, and Federal Agencies increasingly adopt cloud computing paradigms, our investment to adapt our VoIP portfolio to leverage cloud-native technologies provides an additional growth opportunity for the business.
We believe our strategy to leverage the traditional Ribbon VoIP business to position our full portfolio of IP Networking and Optical Transport products will continue to gain momentum and allow us to win important new customers each quarter.
We cordially invite you to participate in our annual meeting of stockholders at 10:00 a.m. (Eastern Time) on Wednesday, May 25, 2022. Due to the continuing public health concerns related to the COVID-19 pandemic, and to allow more stockholders the opportunity to attend, this year’s annual meeting will be held in a virtual meeting format only. You will be able to attend the 2022 annual meeting online and submit your questions during the meeting by visiting www.virtualshareholdermeeting.com/RBBN2022.
Whether you plan to attend the annual meeting virtually or not, it is important that your shares be represented and voted. Therefore, I urge you to promptly vote your proxy. Every stockholder’s vote is important.
Thank you for your continued confidence in Ribbon, and we look forward to speaking with you at the annual meeting!
Sincerely,
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Bruce McClelland
President and CEO
April 8, 2022

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NOTICE OF 2022 ANNUAL MEETING
OF STOCKHOLDERS
2022 Annual Meeting
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Date and Time
May 25, 2022
10:00 a.m. Eastern Time
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Virtual Meeting URL
www.virtualshareholdermeeting.com/RBBN2022
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Record Date
You can vote electronically at, and are entitled to notice of, the 2022 Annual Meeting if you were a stockholder of record on April 1, 2022
Agenda
1
Election of eight directors as named in the Proxy Statement
2
Ratification of the appointment of Deloitte & Touche LLP as Ribbon Communications’ independent registered public accounting firm for 2022
3
Approval, on a non-binding advisory basis, of the compensation of our named executive officers
4
Approval of an amendment to the Ribbon Communications Inc. Amended and Restated 2019 Incentive Award Plan to add additional shares
5
Transaction of other business, if any, as may properly come before the meeting or any adjournment, continuation or postponement thereof
Voting
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Internet
www.proxyvote.com, 24/7
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Telephone
Toll-free 1 (800) 690-6903
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Mail
Mark, sign and date your proxy card or voting instruction form and return it in the postage-paid envelope
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During the Annual Meeting
Enter the 16-digit control number you received with your proxy or voting instructions and attend the webcast of the meeting via the internet: www.virtualshareholdermeeting.com/
RBBN2022
A complete list of our stockholders as of the Record Date will be available for examination by any stockholder during the ten days prior to the 2022 Annual Meeting for a purpose germane to the 2022 Annual Meeting by sending an email to ir@rbbn.com, stating the purpose of the request and providing proof of ownership of Company stock. The list of stockholders will also be available during the virtual meeting after you enter the virtual meeting using the 16-digit control number you received with the Notice of Internet Availiability of Proxy Materials, proxy card or voting instructions for the 2022 Annual Meeting. For additional information, see “How can I attend the virtual meeting?” in the section entitled “Information about the Annual Meeting” in the Proxy Statement.
Whether or not you expect to attend the 2022 Annual Meeting electronically, we urge you to vote your shares as promptly as possible to ensure your representation and the presence of a quorum at the 2022 Annual Meeting. If you send in your proxy card, you may still decide to attend the 2022 Annual Meeting and vote your shares electronically. Your proxy is revocable in accordance with the procedures set forth in the accompanying proxy statement.
April 8, 2022
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By Order of the Board of Directors,
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Patrick W. Macken
Executive Vice President, Chief Legal Officer
and Corporate Secretary
This Proxy Statement, form of proxy and the 2021 Annual Report are first
being made available to stockholders on or about April 8, 2022.

TABLE OF CONTENTS
1 SUMMARY INFORMATION
7 CORPORATE GOVERNANCE AND BOARD MATTERS
7
PROPOSAL 1 — Election of Directors
9
Director Nominees
16
Corporate Governance
16
Oversight of Risk Management
17
Board Composition and Stockholders Agreement
18
Director Experience and Tenure
19
Director Independence
20
Meeting Attendance
20
Board Committees
25
Director Nomination Process
25
Stockholder Nominations and Recommendations of Director Candidates
26
Board Leadership Structure
26
Executive Sessions of the Board
26
Additional Governance Matters
27
Transactions with Related Persons
29
Director Compensation
32 AUDIT MATTERS
32
PROPOSAL 2 — Ratificiation of the Appointment of Independent Registered Public Accounting Firm
32
Deloitte Fees
33
Policy on Audit Committee Pre-Approval of Audit and Non-Audit Services
34
Audit Committee Report
35 EXECUTIVE OFFICERS
38 EXECUTIVE COMPENSATION
38
PROPOSAL 3 — Approval, on a Non-Binding Basis, of the Compensation of our Named Executive Officers
39
PROPOSAL 4 — Approval of an Amendment to the Ribbon Communications Inc. Amended and Restated 2019 Incentive Award Plan
Executive Compensation Information
56
Compensation Discussion and Analysis
72
Compensation Committee Report
73
Executive Compensation Tables
73
74
76
77
79
81
82
CEO Pay Ratio
83 STOCK INFORMATION
83
Beneficial Ownership of Our Common Stock
85 ADDITIONAL INFORMATION
85
Information about the Annual Meeting
91
Stockholder Proposals for Inclusion in 2023 Proxy Statement
91
Stockholder Nominations and Proposals for Presentation at 2023 Annual Meeting
91
Stockholders Sharing the Same Address
92
Form 10-K
92
Other Matters
A-1 APPENDIX
A-1
APPENDIX A — Amendment to the Ribbon Communications Inc. Amended and Restated 2019 Incentive Award Plan
IMPORTANT NOTICE REGARDING AVAILABILITY OF PROXY MATERIALS FOR THE
STOCKHOLDER MEETING TO BE HELD ON MAY 25, 2022
This Proxy Statement and the 2021 Annual Report to Stockholders are available for
viewing, printing and downloading at www.proxyvote.com.
Ribbon Communications Inc. 2022 Proxy Statement |i

Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
This proxy statement contains “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, which are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties. All statements other than statements of historical facts contained in this proxy statement, including without limitation statements regarding projected financial results, customer engagement and momentum, and plans for future product development and manufacturing, are forward-looking statements. Without limiting the foregoing, the words “believes,” “estimates,” “expects,” “expectations,” “intends,” “may,” “plans,” “projects” and other similar language, are intended to identify forward-looking statements.
Forward-looking statements are based on our current expectations and assumptions regarding our business, the economy and other future conditions. Because forward-looking statements relate to the future, they are subject to inherent uncertainties, risks and changes in circumstances that are difficult to predict. Our actual results may differ materially from those contemplated in these forward-looking statements due to various risks, uncertainties and other important factors, including, among others, risks related to supply chain disruptions resulting from component availability; the effects of geopolitical instabilities and disputes, including between Russia and Ukraine; risks related to the continuing COVID-19 pandemic, including delays in customer deployments as a result of rises in cases; risks that we will not realize estimated cost savings and/or anticipated benefits from our acquisition of ECI Telecom Group Ltd. (“ECI”); risks that we will not realize the estimated cost savings and/or anticipated benefits from our strategic restructuring and other cost-containment activities; failure to realize anticipated benefits from the sale of our Kandy Communications business (“Kandy”) or declines in the value of our ongoing investment in American Virtual Cloud Technologies, Inc. (“AVCT”), the purchaser of Kandy; unpredictable fluctuations in quarterly revenue and operating results; risks related to cybersecurity and data intrusion; failure to compete successfully against telecommunications equipment and networking companies; failure to grow our customer base or generate recurring business from our existing customers; credit risks; the timing of customer purchasing decisions and our recognition of revenues; macroeconomic conditions; litigation; market acceptance of our products and services; rapid technological and market change; our ability to protect our intellectual property rights and obtain necessary licenses; our ability to maintain partner, reseller, distribution and vendor support and supply relationships; the potential for defects in our products; risks related to the terms of our credit agreement including compliance with the financial covenants; higher risks in international operations and markets; increases in tariffs, trade restrictions or taxes on our products; currency fluctuations; and failure or circumvention of our controls and procedures.
These factors are not intended to be an all-encompassing list of risks and uncertainties that may affect our business and results from operations. Additional information regarding these and other factors can be found in our reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including, without limitation, our Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2021. In providing forward-looking statements, we expressly disclaim any obligation to update these statements publicly or otherwise, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by law.
ii|Ribbon Communications Inc. 2022 Proxy Statement

Summary
Information
Corporate
Governance and
Board Matters
Audit
Matters
Executive
Officers
Executive
Compensation
Stock
Information
Additional
Information
Appendix
SUMMARY INFORMATION
To assist you in reviewing the proposals to be acted upon at our 2022 annual meeting of stockholders (the “2022 Annual Meeting”), we would like to call your attention to the following summary information about Ribbon, our 2021 business and financial highlights and corporate governance highlights. It does not include all information necessary to make a voting decision, and you should read this proxy statement (“Proxy Statement”) in its entirety before casting your vote.
Unless the content otherwise requires, references in this Proxy Statement to “Ribbon,” “Ribbon Communications,” “Company,” “we,” “us” and “our” refer to Ribbon Communications Inc. and its subsidiaries on a consolidated basis.
Ribbon Overview
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Our Vision
Customers trust us to solve their most challenging communications issues, enabling people and devices to connect seamlessly anytime, anywhere.
Our customer-centric culture shapes all our activity and inspires our team members to make a positive impact with our clients, investors and communities.
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Our Mission
To create a recognized global technology leader providing cloud-centric solutions that enable the secure exchange of information with unparalleled scale, performance and elasticity.
We are a global provider of converged communications software and network solutions to service providers, enterprises, and critical infrastructure sectors. Our mission is to create a recognized global technology leader providing cloud-centric solutions that enable the secure exchange of information, with unparalleled scale, performance, and elasticity.
2021 In Review and Path Ahead Highlights
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Ribbon Communications Inc. 2022 Proxy Statement |1

Summary
Information
Corporate
Governance and
Board Matters
Audit
Matters
Executive
Officers
Executive
Compensation
Stock
Information
Additional
Information
Appendix
Key Technology Trends Underpinning our Strategy
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Environmental, Social & Governance (ESG) Practice Highlights
As we have evolved and matured through both organic growth and acquisitions, we have adopted a more strategic approach to Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) practices. In 2021, we undertook a comprehensive process to analyze the needs and expectations of our key stakeholders, and to identify the areas that contribute the most to our sustainability footprint. Ribbon aims to address the needs and expectations of stakeholders in a responsible, accountable and transparent manner. We believe that engaging with stakeholders is good for our business and our ability to deliver favorable results for them and for the broader needs of society and the environment in general.
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2|Ribbon Communications Inc. 2022 Proxy Statement

Summary
Information
Corporate
Governance and
Board Matters
Audit
Matters
Executive
Officers
Executive
Compensation
Stock
Information
Additional
Information
Appendix
Sustainability Targets
In 2021 we adopted three targets in areas we believe are the most critical for our future success and for the success of people and the planet.
Our “Three by Thirty” Sustainability Targets
Climate Change
Diversity & Inclusion
Supply Chain
Reduce direct Carbon
emissions by 30% by 2030
(Scope 1 and 2 CO2e, from a
base year of 2018)
Increase women in
management to 30% of all
management roles
by 2025
Audit more than 30% of our
Tier 1 suppliers with zero
major non-conformances
against Ribbon’s Supplier
Audit Protocol
Longer-Term Sustainability Aspirations
Climate Change
Diversity & Inclusion
Supply Chain
Net zero carbon emissions
40% women in management
100% Tier 1 suppliers
compliant with Ribbon’s
Supplier Audit Protocol and
improving sustainability performance
Executive Compensation
The philosophy behind our executive compensation program is to promote alignment of the interests of our executive officers with the interests of our stockholders. The key factors considered in the creation of our compensation programs include:
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We believe that our executive compensation program supports our business strategies and talent management objectives and is consistent with sound governance practices that are intended to best serve our stockholders’ long-term interests. The components of the NEOs’ 2021 compensation (excluding the CEO) are:
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Ribbon Communications Inc. 2022 Proxy Statement |3

Summary
Information
Corporate
Governance and
Board Matters
Audit
Matters
Executive
Officers
Executive
Compensation
Stock
Information
Additional
Information
Appendix
In making its compensation decisions for 2021, the Compensation Committee considered, among other things:

our financial and operational results for the year,

the result of the say-on-pay vote at our 2021 annual meeting of stockholders, and

the achievement of the compensation objectives set by the Compensation Committee.
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Corporate Governance
Ribbon is committed to operating ethically, efficiently and inclusively. It has always been paramount to our way of doing business to act with the utmost integrity, honesty and transparency. Our commitment to ethical business practices guides us in our compliance with national and international laws and regulations and we believe strong corporate governance is critical to our long-term success. Highlights of our corporate governance include:
Best Practices
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Six of nine current directors are independent
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Majority voting for director elections
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No staggered Board
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Separate Chairman and CEO roles
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Lead independent director
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Independent directors meet regularly without management present
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Board review (through its standing committees) of ESG strategies, activities, policies and communications
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Code of Conduct applicable to Board
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Annual Board and committee self-assessments
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Share ownership guidelines for directors and Section 16 officers
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Standing Audit, Compensation and Nominating and Corporate Governance Committees comprised solely of independent directors
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Robust oversight of risk management
4|Ribbon Communications Inc. 2022 Proxy Statement

Summary
Information
Corporate
Governance and
Board Matters
Audit
Matters
Executive
Officers
Executive
Compensation
Stock
Information
Additional
Information
Appendix
Current Board of Directors and Committees
Name and Principal Occupation
Age
Director
Since
Independent
Other
Public
Company
Boards
Committee Membership
Audit
Compensation
Nominating
& Corporate
Governance
Technology
& Innovation
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Mariano S. de Beer
Former Chief
Commercial and
Digital Officer,
Telefónica S.A.
51
June 
2020
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0
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R. Stewart Ewing, Jr.
Chief Financial
Officer, InterMountain Management
70
March 
2020
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0
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Bruns H. Grayson[MISSING IMAGE: tm223573d2-icon_leadpn.jpg]
Managing Partner,
ABS Ventures
74
October 
2017
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1
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Beatriz V. Infante
Chief Executive Officer,
Business Excelleration LLC
68
October 
2017
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2
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Bruce W. McClelland
President and Chief
Executive Officer, Ribbon
Communications Inc.
55
March 
2020
0
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Krish A. Prabhu(1)
Former Chief
Technology Officer
and President, AT&T
Labs
67
March 
2020
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1
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Shaul Shani[MISSING IMAGE: tm223573d2-icon_starbw.jpg]
Founder and Chairman,
Swarth Group
67
June 
2020
0
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Richard W. Smith
Chairman of Private Capital, JPMorgan
Chase & Co.
69
October 
2017
0
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Tanya Tamone
Chief Executive
Officer, Sogerco S.A.
60
June 
2020
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0
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Committee
Chair
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Committee
Member
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Chairman
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Lead Independent
Director
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Audit Committee
finanical expert
(1)
Mr. Prabhu will not stand for election at the 2022 Annual Meeting.
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Ribbon Communications Inc. 2022 Proxy Statement |5

Summary
Information
Corporate
Governance and
Board Matters
Audit
Matters
Executive
Officers
Executive
Compensation
Stock
Information
Additional
Information
Appendix
Annual Meeting Proposals
Proposal
Board Recommendation
Page Reference
1
Election of eight directors as named in this Proxy Statement
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FOR each of the nominees
7
2
Ratification of the appointment of auditors
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FOR
32
3
Approval, on a non-binding advisory basis, of the compensation of our named executive officers
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FOR
38
4
Approval of an amendment to the Ribbon Communications Inc. Amended and Restated 2019 Incentive Award Plan to add additional shares
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FOR
39
6|Ribbon Communications Inc. 2022 Proxy Statement

Summary
Information
Corporate
Governance and
Board Matters
Audit
Matters
Executive
Officers
Executive
Compensation
Stock
Information
Additional
Information
Appendix
CORPORATE GOVERNANCE AND BOARD MATTERS
1
Proposal 1 — Election of Directors
The Board has nominated the following eight director nominees for election to the Board to hold office until the 2023 Annual Meeting and until his or her respective successor is duly elected and qualified:
Nominee
Designated By
R. Stewart Ewing, Jr. JPM Stockholders (as defined below)
Richard W. Smith JPM Stockholders
Mariano S. de Beer Swarth (as defined below)
Shaul Shani Swarth
Tanya Tamone Swarth
Bruns H. Grayson
Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee
Beatriz V. Infante
Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee
Bruce W. McClelland
Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee
All of the nominees are currently directors. Each nominee agreed to be named in this Proxy Statement and to serve if elected. All nominees are expected to virtually attend the 2022 Annual Meeting.
Krish Prabhu, a current director designated by the JPM Stockholders, has decided not to stand for election at the 2022 Annual Meeting. As a result, the Board has set the size of the Board of Directors, as of the 2022 Annual Meeting, at eight members and the JPM Stockholders will temporarily waive their right to designate three directors as described below under “— Designation Rights.” If the JPM Stockholders decide to designate a third director after the 2022 Annual Meeting, it is expected that the Board will take further action to increase the size of the Board to nine members with the additional director position being filled by the third JPM Stockholders designee.
Designation Rights
On March 3, 2020, we entered into a First Amended and Restated Stockholders Agreement (the “Stockholders Agreement”) with JPMC Heritage Parent LLC (“JPMC”), Heritage PE (OEP) III, L.P. (together with JPMC, entities affiliated with the Company’s largest stockholder, JPMorgan Chase & Co. (collectively with any successor entities, the “JPM Stockholders”)), and ECI Holding (Hungary) Kft (“Swarth”). Pursuant to the Stockholders Agreement, the Board of Directors is required to consist of:
(i)
three individuals designated by the JPM Stockholders,
(ii)
three individuals designated by Swarth,
(iii)
our Chief Executive Officer, and
(iv)
a number of other individuals designated by the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee sufficient to ensure that there are no vacancies on the Board.
Our Board currently consists of nine directors. However, as noted above, the Board has set the size of the Board of Directors, as of the 2022 Annual Meeting, at eight members and the JPM Stockholders have designated two current directors for election, temporarily waiving their right to designate a third director. The authorized number of directors is determined from time to time by the Board, subject to the requirements of the Stockholders Agreement. The directors designated for
Ribbon Communications Inc. 2022 Proxy Statement |7

Summary
Information
Corporate
Governance and
Board Matters
Audit
Matters
Executive
Officers
Executive
Compensation
Stock
Information
Additional
Information
Appendix
election by each of the JPM Stockholders and Swarth under the Stockholders Agreement are noted in the table above. The JPM Stockholders and Swarth owned 33.27% and 17.18%, respectively, of Ribbon’s common stock as of April 1, 2022.
The Company has agreed to take all necessary actions within its control to include both the JPM Stockholders’ and Swarths’ designees in the slate of nominees recommended by the Board for election of directors and to cause the stockholders of the Company to elect the designees. For so long as the JPM Stockholders or Swarth has the right to designate a director under the Stockholders Agreement, with respect to any proposal or resolution relating to the election of directors, each of the JPM Stockholders and Swarth, respectively, has agreed to take all necessary actions within their control to vote their shares (A) affirmatively in favor of the election of the other’s designees and (B) with respect to each person nominated to serve as a director by the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee, either affirmatively in favor of such nominee, or in the same proportion to all shares voted by other stockholders of the Company.
Independence of Director Nominees
Except for Bruce W. McClelland, our President and CEO, Shaul Shani and Richard W. Smith, each of our nominees is independent according to the director independence standards set forth in our Corporate Governance Guidelines, which meet the director independence standards of the Nasdaq Stock Market (“Nasdaq”). For more information, see “Corporate Governance and Board Matters —  Director Independence.” We have no reason to believe that any of the nominees will be unable or unwilling to serve if elected. However, if any nominee should become unable to serve, or for good cause will not serve as a director, proxies may be voted for another person nominated as a substitute by the Board, or the Board may reduce the number of directors. In the event any director designated by either the JPM Stockholders or Swarth is unable to serve, the JPM Stockholders or Swarth, as the case may be, are entitled to designate a replacement director, subject to the conditions set forth in the Stockholders Agreement.
Board Diversity
Nasdaq Board Diversity Matrix (As of April 1, 2022)
Total Number of Directors
9
Female
Male
Non-Binary
Gender
Undisclosed
Gender
Directors
2
7
0
0
Number of Directors Who Identify in Any of the Categories Below
African American or Black
0
0
0
0
Alaskan Native or Native American
0
0
0
0
Asian
0
1
0
0
Hispanic or Latinx
1
1
0
0
Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander
0
0
0
0
White
1
5
0
0
Two or More Races or Ethnicities
0
0
0
0
LGBTQ+
0
Did Not Disclose Demographic Background
0
PROPOSAL
1
The Board of Directors recommends that stockholders vote FOR
the election of each of the nominees listed above.
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8|Ribbon Communications Inc. 2022 Proxy Statement

Summary
Information
Corporate
Governance and
Board Matters
Audit
Matters
Executive
Officers
Executive
Compensation
Stock
Information
Additional
Information
Appendix
Director Nominees
The biographies below describe the skills, qualities, attributes and experience of the director nominees that led the Board and its Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee to determine that it is appropriate to nominate these individuals as directors.
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AGE 51
COMMITTEES

Technology and
Innovation (Chair)
MARIANO S. DE BEER
Independent Director
Director since June 2020
BACKGROUND
Telefónica S.A., a large public multinational telecommunications company

Chief Commercial and Digital Officer (2017 to 2019)

Member of the Telefónica Group Executive Committee (2017 to 2019)

served in different capacities at companies of the Telefónica Group
Microsoft

General Manager (President) of the multi-country Region LATAM New Markets (2015 to 2016)

General Manager (President), Brazil (2013 to 2015)
RBS Educação, part of the Brazilian conglomerate RBS Group

CEO (2012 to 2013)
McKinsey & Co.

Consultant
EDUCATION

Graduated from UADE in Argentina

MBA, Georgetown University
SKILLS AND EXPERTISE
The Board believes Mr. de Beer is qualified to serve on the Board due to his extensive leadership experience in the telecommunications industry, in particular at Telefónica S.A., and his global business perspective.
 
Ribbon Communications Inc. 2022 Proxy Statement |9

Summary
Information
Corporate
Governance and
Board Matters
Audit
Matters
Executive
Officers
Executive
Compensation
Stock
Information
Additional
Information
Appendix
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AGE 70
COMMITTEES

Audit (Chair and Audit Committee Financial Expert)

Nominating and Corporate Governance
R. STEWART EWING, JR.
Independent Director
Director since March 2020
BACKGROUND
InterMountain Management, a privately-owned hotel management company

Chief Financial Officer (April 2020 to present)
CenturyLink, Inc. (“CenturyLink,” now Lumen Technologies), a global technology company offering communications, network services, security, cloud solutions and voice and managed services

Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer (1989 to November 2017)

Vice President and Controller (1984 to 1989)

Vice President of Finance (1983 to 1984)
KPMG

Accountant (1973 to 1982)
BOARD SERVICE

TelUSA, LLC, a subsidiary of CenturyLink (January 2020 to present)

Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities (2019 to present)

Progressive Bancorp, Inc., Chairman of the Audit Committee (2002 to present)
EDUCATION

BS, Northwestern State University
SKILLS AND EXPERTISE
The Board believes Mr. Ewing brings to the Board executive leadership experience at CenturyLink, along with extensive financial expertise. The Board believes Mr. Ewing is qualified to serve on the Board because of his experience as chief financial officer at CenturyLink and his experience leading the integration of acquired companies into CenturyLink’s corporate structure and philosophy.
 
10|Ribbon Communications Inc. 2022 Proxy Statement

Summary
Information
Corporate
Governance and
Board Matters
Audit
Matters
Executive
Officers
Executive
Compensation
Stock
Information
Additional
Information
Appendix
[MISSING IMAGE: ph_brunshgrayson-lg4clr.jpg]
AGE 74
COMMITTEES

Audit

Compensation

Nominating and Corporate Governance (Chair)
BRUNS H. GRAYSON
Lead Independent Director
Director since March 2020
BACKGROUND
ABS Ventures, a venture capital firm

Managing Partner (1983 to present)
Adler & Co.

Venture Capitalist (1980 to 1983)
McKinsey & Co., a management consulting firm

Associate (1978 to 1980)
U.S. Army

Captain (1970)
BOARD SERVICE

Everbridge, Inc., a provider of communications solutions (2012 to present)

served as a director for many private and public companies over the last 30 years
EDUCATION

elected a Rhodes Scholar from California (1974)

JD, University of Virginia School of Law

Master’s degree, Oxford University

BA, Harvard College
SKILLS AND EXPERTISE
The Board believes Mr. Grayson is qualified to serve on the Board based on his knowledge of the data communication and software industries, his investment experience as a Managing Partner at ABS Ventures, and his experience as a director of various public companies.
 
Ribbon Communications Inc. 2022 Proxy Statement |11

Summary
Information
Corporate
Governance and
Board Matters
Audit
Matters
Executive
Officers
Executive
Compensation
Stock
Information
Additional
Information
Appendix
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AGE 68
COMMITTEES

Audit

Compensation (Chair)

Technology and Innovation
BEATRIZ V. INFANTE
Independent Director
Director since October 2017
BACKGROUND
BusinessExcelleration LLC, a business consultancy specializing in corporate transformation and renewal

Chief Executive Officer (2009 to present)
ENXSUITE Corporation, a leading supplier of energy management solutions

Chief Executive Officer (2020 until its acquisition by Infor in 2011)
VoiceObjects Inc., a market leader in voice applications servers

Chief Executive Officer (2006 until its acquisition by Voxeo Corporation in 2008)
Sychron Inc., a data center automation company

Interim Chief Executive Officer (2004 to 2005)
Aspect Communications Corporation (“Aspect”), a market leader in communications solutions

Chief Executive Officer (April 2000 to October 2003)

Co-President and additional executive roles (October 1998 to April 2000)
BOARD SERVICE

Current National Association of Corporate Directors Board Leadership Fellow

PriceSmart, Inc., Chair of its Digital Transformation Committee, Chair of its Compensation Committee and Audit Committee member

Guardian Analytics, Advisory Board member

Infrascale, Chair of the Advisory Board
BOARD SERVICE (cont’d)

Liquidity Services Inc., Chair of the Compensation Committee and Audit Committee member

Ultratech, Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee member (until its acquisition by Veeco in May 2017)

Emulex Corporation, Chair of the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee (until its acquisition by Broadcom Limited in May 2015) and Compensation Committee member

Synchron, Inc. (until its sale to an investor group in 2005)

Aspect, Board Chair

Previously served as a director at a number of privately held companies
EDUCATION

Master of Science degree, California Institute of Technology

Bachelor of Science and Engineering degree, Princeton University
SKILLS AND EXPERTISE
The Board believes Ms. Infante is qualified to serve on the Board due to her executive leadership experience, including as a chief executive officer of various companies, along with extensive operational expertise and experience in engineering, sales, and marketing.
 
12|Ribbon Communications Inc. 2022 Proxy Statement

Summary
Information
Corporate
Governance and
Board Matters
Audit
Matters
Executive
Officers
Executive
Compensation
Stock
Information
Additional
Information
Appendix
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AGE 55
COMMITTEES

None
BRUCE W. MCCLELLAND
Non-Independent Director
Director since March 2020
BACKGROUND
Ribbon Communications Inc.

President and Chief Executive Officer, responsible for the strategic direction and management of Ribbon (March 2020 to present)
CommScope Inc. (“CommScope”), a global network infrastructure provider

Chief Operating Officer, responsible for the combined portfolio of products and services (April 2019 to August 2019)
ARRIS International plc (“ARRIS”), a telecommunications equipment manufacturing company

Chief Executive Officer (September 2016 until its sale to CommScope in April 2019)

served in numerous leadership roles during 20 years at ARRIS and managed the successful acquisition and integration of the Ruckus Wireless and Brocade ICX Campus switching business from Broadcom Inc., a major step in diversifying the ARRIS business beyond the service provider market into the broader enterprise market, while strengthening the company’s wireless technology capabilities
ARRIS (cont’d)

held several other roles at ARRIS, including President of Network & Cloud and Global Services (April 2013 to August 2016)

authored several communications-related patents
Nortel Networks Corporation (“Nortel”) and Bell Northern Research (“BNR”)

served in leadership roles for eleven years

began his career with BNR in Ottawa, Canada, responsible for the development of Nortel’s SS7 switching products immediately prior to joining ARRIS
EDUCATION

BE, the University of Saskatchewan
SKILLS AND EXPERTISE
The Board believes Mr. McClelland is qualified to serve on the Board due to his executive leadership experience, including as a chief executive officer of ARRIS, along with extensive operational expertise and experience in engineering.
 
Ribbon Communications Inc. 2022 Proxy Statement |13

Summary
Information
Corporate
Governance and
Board Matters
Audit
Matters
Executive
Officers
Executive
Compensation
Stock
Information
Additional
Information
Appendix
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AGE 67
COMMITTEES

None
SHAUL SHANI
Non-Independent Director
Director and Chairman of the Board since June 2020
BACKGROUND
Entrepreneur
Swarth Group, a private global investment company investing in public and private companies primarily in the communication services, technology, IT, cyber, renewable energy and real estate sectors as well as financial markets

Founder and Chairman (2006 to present)
Magnum Group, an investment group investing in telecom and tech ventures, including DSP Group (a major shareholder of AudioCodes which was taken public in 1999)

Founder (1994 to 2006)
Sapiens International Corporation, a software development company which was listed on the Nasdaq Stock Market in 1992

Founder and Chief Executive Officer (1989 to 1993)
Eurosoft, an IT company

Founder and Chief Executive Officer (1987 to 1985)
Tecnomatix Technologies

Founder (1983)
Oshap Technologies Ltd., a developer of flexible automation software for robotics

Founder and Chief Executive Officer (1982 to 1985)
BOARD SERVICE

ECI (where Swarth Group was the controlling shareholder) (2007 to 2012), holding the position of Chairman (2009 to 2012)

Global Village Telecom, a telecommunications service provider in Brazil (where Swarth Group was the lead investor), Executive Chairman (1997 until its acquisition by the Vivendi Group in 2009)

DSP Group (serving as director on behalf of the Magnum Group) (1999 to 2000)

Sapiens International Corporation, Chairman (1989 to 1993)

held board positions at many private and public companies in the field of telecommunications and technology over the last 30 years
SKILLS AND EXPERTISE
The Board believes Mr. Shani is qualified to serve on the Board due to his extensive background in finance and private equity, his extensive knowledge of ECI’s business and his experience serving as a director of companies in the telecommunications industry.
 
14|Ribbon Communications Inc. 2022 Proxy Statement

Summary
Information
Corporate
Governance and
Board Matters
Audit
Matters
Executive
Officers
Executive
Compensation
Stock
Information
Additional
Information
Appendix
[MISSING IMAGE: ph_richardwsmith-lg4c.jpg]
AGE 69
COMMITTEES

None
RICHARD W. SMITH
Non-Independent Director
Director since October 2017
BACKGROUND
JPMorgan Chase & Co., a multinational banking and financial services holding company

Chairman, Private Capital, creating and guiding a series of investment entities focused initially on technology, sustainability and healthcare, funded by the bank and clients (February 2021 to present)

Head of Private Investments, responsible for private and public company investments solely funded by the bank (November 2014 to January 2021)

One Equity Partners, Partner (July 2002 to present)
Allegra Partners and predecessor entities

Managing Partner (1981 to 2013)
Citicorp Venture Capital Ltd., a former venture and private equity investment division of Citigroup Inc.

Senior Investment Manager (1979 to 1981)
Morgan Guaranty Trust Company of New York

worked in the International Money Management Group (1974 to 1979)
BOARD SERVICE

GENBAND (2014 to 2017)

has over 40 years of experience as a board member of both public and private companies
PUBLICATION

Co-author of the book Treasury Management: A Practitioner’s Handbook, John Wiley & Sons, 1980
EDUCATION

BA, Harvard College
SKILLS AND EXPERTISE
Mr. Smith has held positions as Managing Director and Managing Partner and General Partner at private equity and venture funds since 1981, and has over 40 years of experience as a technology investor.
The Board believes Mr. Smith is qualified to serve on the Board due to his extensive background in finance and private equity and his experience serving as a director of companies in the telecommunications industry.
 
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AGE 60
COMMITTEES

Nominating and Corporate Governance
TANYA TAMONE
Independent Director
Director since June 2020
BACKGROUND
Sogerco S.A., a private trust company

Chief Executive Officer (2007 to present)
Bank Leu, Fuji Bank and Cedef S.A., in Switzerland

Trader, specializing in currency and interest trading (1985 to 1996)
BOARD SERVICE

currently serves as a director for several privately held companies
SKILLS AND EXPERTISE
The Board believes Ms. Tamone is qualified to serve on the Board due to her experience as a Chief Executive Officer and her financial expertise.
 
Ribbon Communications Inc. 2022 Proxy Statement |15

Summary
Information
Corporate
Governance and
Board Matters
Audit
Matters
Executive
Officers
Executive
Compensation
Stock
Information
Additional
Information
Appendix
Corporate Governance
We are committed to strong corporate governance practices, which include building long-term value for our stockholders and assuring the success of the Company for our stockholders and stakeholders, including our employees, customers, suppliers and the communities in which we operate. To achieve these goals, our Board is charged with monitoring the performance of the Company and our officers as well as its programs and procedures to ensure compliance with law and our overall success. Governance is an ongoing focus at Ribbon, starting with the Board and extending to management and all employees. In addition, we solicit feedback from stockholders on governance and executive compensation practices in order to improve our practices.
Strong Governance Practices
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Annual election of all directors
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Majority voting for director elections
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Separate Chairman and CEO
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Appointment of lead independent director
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Substantial majority of independent directors
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Independent directors meet without management
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Board with wide range of experience and skills
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Annual equity grant to non-employee directors
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Annual Board and committee self-assessments
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Annual advisory approval of executive compensation
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Disclosure Committee for financial reporting
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Review and approval policy for related party transactions
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Share ownership guidelines for our CEO, certain officers and our non-employee directors
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Clawback policy for recovering incentive-based compensation following an accounting restatement
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Insider trading policy that prohibits hedging, pledging and other similar actions for our executive officers and directors
Oversight of Risk Management
At Ribbon, we believe that innovation and leadership are impossible without taking risks. We also recognize that imprudent acceptance of risk or the failure to appropriately identify and mitigate risks could be destructive to stockholder value. The Board is responsible for assessing the Company’s approach to risk management and overseeing management’s execution of its responsibilities for identifying and managing risk. The Board exercises its responsibilities through discussions in Board meetings and also through its committees, each of which examines various components of enterprise risk as part of its responsibilities.
THE FULL BOARD
generally, oversees and evaluates:

strategic risks, including risks relating to the Covid-19 pandemic and its impact on the Company, our employees, customers and suppliers, and the risks related to management delegation
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THE AUDIT
COMMITTEE
THE COMPENSATION
COMMITTEE
THE NOMINATING AND
CORPORATE
GOVERNANCE COMMITTEE
THE TECHNOLOGY
AND INNOVATION
COMMITTEE
oversees and evaluates:

financial, internal control and cyber security risks
oversees and evaluates:

risks related to our compensation policies
oversees and evaluates:

risks related to governance
oversees and evaluates:

risks related to significant R&D decisions
16|Ribbon Communications Inc. 2022 Proxy Statement

Summary
Information
Corporate
Governance and
Board Matters
Audit
Matters
Executive
Officers
Executive
Compensation
Stock
Information
Additional
Information
Appendix
Each committee assesses identified risks and informs the Board about the risks as needed. Management also regularly reports on each such risk to the relevant committee or the Board. Moreover, an overall review of risk is inherent in the Board’s consideration of our long-term strategies and in the transactions and other matters presented to the Board, including capital expenditures, acquisitions and divestitures, and financial matters. Additional review or reporting on risks is conducted as needed or as requested by the Board or one of its committees. The Board believes that its role in the oversight of the Company’s risks complements our current Board structure, as our structure allows our independent directors, through our four fully independent Board committees, to exercise effective oversight of the actions of management in identifying risks and implementing effective risk management policies and controls.
Board Composition and Stockholders Agreement
Our Board currently consists of nine directors, one of whom is employed by the Company (Mr. McClelland). As previously noted in this Proxy Statement, the Company is party to the Stockholders Agreement with the JPM Stockholders and Swarth. The Stockholders Agreement provides, among other things, that:
(i)
the Board, including a majority of the independent directors as defined in the Stockholders Agreement, may approve a different number of directors that comprise the Board;
(ii)
with respect to the JPM Stockholders:
(A)
for so long as the JPM Stockholders beneficially own at least 43% of the Company’s common stock beneficially owned by the JPM Stockholders in the aggregate on March 3, 2020, the JPM Stockholders have the right to designate three directors to serve on the Board, at least two of whom must be independent directors as defined in the Stockholders Agreement;
(B)
from and after the first time that the JPM Stockholders beneficially own less than 43% and at least 29% of the Company’s common stock beneficially owned by the JPM Stockholders in the aggregate on March 3, 2020, the number of directors that the JPM Stockholders have the right to designate will be reduced to two, at least one of whom must be an independent director as defined in the Stockholders Agreement;
(C)
from and after the first time that the JPM Stockholders beneficially own less than 29% and at least 14% of the Company’s common stock beneficially owned by the JPM Stockholders in the aggregate on March 3, 2020, the number of directors that the JPM Stockholders have the right to designate will be reduced to one, who need not qualify as an independent director as defined in the Stockholders Agreement; and
(D)
from and after the first time that the JPM Stockholders beneficially own less than 14% of the shares of the Company’s common stock beneficial owned by the JPM Stockholders in the aggregate on March 3, 2020, the JPM Stockholders will have no right to designate any members of the Board; and
(iii)
with respect to Swarth:
(A)
for so long as Swarth beneficially owns at least 88% of the shares of the Company’s common stock beneficially owned by Swarth in the aggregate on March 3, 2020, Swarth has the right to designate three directors to serve on the Board, of which at least two must be independent directors as defined in the Stockholders Agreement;
(B)
from and after the first time that Swarth beneficially owns less than 88% and at least 58% of the shares of the Company’s common stock beneficially owned by Swarth in the aggregate on March 3, 2020, the number of directors that Swarth has the right to nominate will be reduced to two Board members, of which at least one must be an independent director as defined in the Stockholders Agreement;
Ribbon Communications Inc. 2022 Proxy Statement |17

Summary
Information
Corporate
Governance and
Board Matters
Audit
Matters
Executive
Officers
Executive
Compensation
Stock
Information
Additional
Information
Appendix
(C)
from and after the first time that Swarth beneficially owns less than 58% and at least 29% of the shares of the Company’s common stock beneficially owned by Swarth in the aggregate on March 3, 2020, the number of directors that Swarth has the right to nominate will be reduced to one Board member, who needs not qualify as an independent director as defined in the Stockholders Agreement; and
(D)
from and after the first time that Swarth beneficially owns less than 29% of the shares of Company’s common stock beneficially owned by Swarth in the aggregate on March 3, 2020, Swarth will have no right to nominate any members of the Board.
The Stockholders Agreement further provides that the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee will designate the Company’s then-serving CEO as a director, as well as such additional number of directors as constitutes the full Board so that the Board has no vacancies.
As previously noted, Krish Prabhu will not stand for election at the 2022 Annual Meeting. As a result, the size of the Board will be set at eight members effective as of the 2022 Annual Meeting and the JPM Stockholders have waived their right to designate a third director. If the JPM Stockholders decide to designate a third director after the 2022 Annual Meeting, it is expected that the Board will take further action to increase the size of the Board to nine members with the additional director position being filled by the third JPM Stockholders designee.
In the event any director designated by the JPM Stockholders or Swarth is unable to serve, the JPM Stockholders are and/or Swarth is, as applicable, entitled to designate a replacement director, subject to the conditions set forth in the Stockholders Agreement.
Director Experience and Tenure
Our directors collectively possess a broad mix of skills, qualifications and proven leadership abilities. The Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee practices a long-term approach to board refreshment. The Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee regularly identifies individuals who would complement and enhance the current directors’ skills and experience.
It is of great importance to the Company that the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee recruit directors who help achieve the goal of an experienced, diverse Board that functions effectively as a group. The Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee expects each of the Company’s directors to have proven leadership skills, sound judgment, integrity, and a commitment to the success of the Company. In evaluating director candidates and considering incumbent directors for nomination to the Board, the Committee considers a variety of factors, including independence, financial literacy, personal and professional accomplishments, and experience in light of the needs of the Company. For incumbent directors, the factors also include attendance, past performance on the Board and contributions to the Board and its respective committees.
18|Ribbon Communications Inc. 2022 Proxy Statement

Summary
Information
Corporate
Governance and
Board Matters
Audit
Matters
Executive
Officers
Executive
Compensation
Stock
Information
Additional
Information
Appendix
BOARD EXPERTISE
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Director Skills
and Experience
de Beer
Ewing
Grayson
Infante
McClelland
Shani
Smith
Tamone
#
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Audit and
financial reporting
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1
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Corporate governance
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5
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Executive leadership
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7
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Financial industry, investments, M&A
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7
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Global business
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6
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Human capital management
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8
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Legal, regulatory
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2
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Other public company boards
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4
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Sales and marketing
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1
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Strategic planning, operations
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6
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Risk management
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8
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Technology, digital, communications
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6
Director Independence
Our Corporate Governance Guidelines provide that, in determining the independence of a director, the Board will be guided by the definitions of “independent director” in the listing rules of Nasdaq and applicable laws and regulations as well as the definition of “independent director” set forth in the Stockholders Agreement.
During its annual review of director independence, the Board considers all information it deems relevant, including without limitation, any transactions and relationships between each director or any member of his or her immediate family and the Company and its subsidiaries and affiliates. The Board conducted an annual review of director independence and affirmatively determined that each of Mariano S. de Beer, R. Stewart Ewing, Jr., Bruns H. Grayson, Beatriz V. Infante, Krish A. Prabhu and Tanya Tamone met the definition of “independent director” under the Nasdaq listing rules and the Stockholders Agreement. Following a review of their respective relationships, including, with respect to Mr. Smith, his affiliation with the JPM Stockholders, and with respect to Mr. Shani, his affiliation with Swarth, the Board determined that none of Bruce W. McClelland, Shaul Shani or Richard W. Smith qualify as independent directors under the Nasdaq listing rules or the Stockholders Agreement.
There are no family relationships among any of our directors, nominees for director and executive officers.
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Meeting Attendance
Our Board recognizes the importance of director attendance at Board and committee meetings. Our Board held four meetings during 2021, all of which were regular meetings. Each of the incumbent directors attended at least 75% of the combined total meetings of the Board and its committees on which they served. While we do not have a formal policy regarding the attendance of directors at our annual meetings of stockholders, it is expected that, absent compelling circumstances, all of our directors will attend. All of the then-current members of the Board attended our 2021 annual meeting of stockholders.
Board Committees
Our Board has four standing committees:
The Audit Committee
The Compensation
Committee
The Nominating and Corporate
Governance Committee
The Technology and
Innovation Committee
Each of the standing committees is composed entirely of independent directors as defined under applicable rules, including the Nasdaq rules and, in the case of all members of the Audit Committee, the independence requirements of Rule 10A-3 under the Exchange Act and, in the case of all members of the Compensation Committee, the heightened independence requirements for Compensation Committee members under the Nasdaq rules.
The following table shows the current composition of each of the Board’s standing committees:
Committee Membership
Director
Independent
Audit
Compensation
Nominating
and Corporate
Governance
Technology
and Innovation
Mariano S. de Beer
[MISSING IMAGE: tm223573d2-icon_tickpn.jpg]
[MISSING IMAGE: tm223573d2-icon_chairpn.jpg]
R. Stewart Ewing, Jr.
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[MISSING IMAGE: tm223573d2-icon_chairpn.jpg][MISSING IMAGE: tm223573d2-icon_auditbw.jpg]
[MISSING IMAGE: tm223573d2-icon_circlepn.jpg]
Bruns H. Grayson  [MISSING IMAGE: tm223573d2-icon_leadpn.jpg]
[MISSING IMAGE: tm223573d2-icon_tickpn.jpg]
[MISSING IMAGE: tm223573d2-icon_circlepn.jpg]
[MISSING IMAGE: tm223573d2-icon_circlepn.jpg]
[MISSING IMAGE: tm223573d2-icon_chairpn.jpg]
Beatriz V. Infante
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[MISSING IMAGE: tm223573d2-icon_circlepn.jpg]
[MISSING IMAGE: tm223573d2-icon_chairpn.jpg]
[MISSING IMAGE: tm223573d2-icon_circlepn.jpg]
Bruce W. McClelland
Krish A. Prabhu(1)
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Shaul Shani  [MISSING IMAGE: tm223573d2-icon_starbw.jpg]
Richard W. Smith
Tanya Tamone
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Number of Meetings in 2021
Board — 8
8
7
4
4
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Committee
Chair
[MISSING IMAGE: tm223573d2-icon_circlepn.jpg]
Committee
Member
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Chairman of
the Board
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Lead Independent
Director
[MISSING IMAGE: tm223573d2-icon_auditbw.jpg]
Audit Committee
finanical expert
(1)
Mr. Prabhu will not stand for election at the 2022 Annual Meeting.
Under the Stockholders Agreement and subject to the Company’s obligation to comply with any applicable independence requirements under the Nasdaq rules and the rules of the SEC, or unless waived by the JPM Stockholders, for so long as the JPM Stockholders have the right to nominate at least two directors to the Board:
(i)
the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee will be comprised of three “independent directors” under the Stockholders Agreement, at least one of whom must be a designee of JPM Stockholders;
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(ii)
a designee of the JPM Stockholders must be the Chairman of each of the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee and the Compensation Committee; and
(iii)
only in the case that Swarth does not have the right to nominate at least two directors to the Board, a designee of the JPM Stockholders must be the Chairman of the Audit Committee.
Also under the Stockholders Agreement and subject to the Company’s obligation to comply with any applicable independence requirements under the Nasdaq rules and the rules of the SEC, or unless waived by Swarth, for so long as Swarth has the right to nominate at least two directors to the Board:
(i)
the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee must be comprised of three “independent directors” under the Stockholders Agreement, at least one of whom must be a designee of Swarth,
(ii)
a designee of Swarth must be the Chairman of the Audit Committee; and
(iii)
only in the case that the JPM Stockholders do not have the right to nominate at least two directors to the Board, a designee of Swarth must be the Chairman of each of the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee and the Compensation Committee.
The Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee determines the size and membership of each of the Audit Committee, the Compensation Committee, the Technology and Innovation Committee and all other committees established by the Board, provided that:
(i)
such determination will comply with mandatory legal and listing requirements;
(ii)
for as long as the JPM Stockholders have the right to nominate at least one director to the Board who is eligible to serve on such committee, at least one member of each such committee will be a designee of the JPM Stockholders; and
(iii)
for so long as Swarth has the right to nominate at least one director to the Board who is eligible to serve on such committee, at least one member of each such committee must be a designee of Swarth.
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AUDIT COMMITTEE
CURRENT COMMITTEE MEMBERS
[MISSING IMAGE: tm223573d2-icon_tickpn.gif]All members of the Audit Committee are independent

R. Stewart Ewing, Jr., Chair

Bruns H. Grayson

Beatriz V. Infante
KEY RESPONSIBILITIES
As described more fully in its charter, the Audit Committee’s responsibilities include, among other things:
(i)
appointing, evaluating, retaining, compensating or setting the compensation of, and overseeing the work of and, if appropriate, terminating the appointment of the independent auditor;
(ii)
overseeing the Company’s financial reporting, including reviewing and discussing with management, the independent auditor and a member of the internal audit function, prior to public release, the Company’s annual and quarterly financial statements to be filed with the SEC;
(iii)
overseeing management’s design and maintenance of the Company’s internal control over financial reporting and disclosure controls and procedures; and
(iv)
reviewing and discussing with management and the independent auditor the Company’s financial and cyber security risk exposures and assessing the policies and procedures management has implemented to monitor and control such exposures.
CHARTER
The Audit Committee operates pursuant to a written charter adopted by the Board that reflects standards and requirements adopted by the SEC and Nasdaq, a current copy of which is available at investors.ribboncommunications.com/corporate-governance/governance-highlights
QUALIFICATIONS
Our Board has determined that Mr. Ewing is an “audit committee financial expert” as defined in Item 407(d)(5) of Regulation S-K. This designation is a disclosure requirement of the SEC related to Mr. Ewing’s experience and understanding with respect to certain accounting and auditing matters, but it does not impose upon Mr. Ewing any duties, obligations or liability that are greater than are generally imposed on him as a member of the Audit Committee and the Board, and his designation as an audit committee financial expert pursuant to this SEC requirement does not affect the duties, obligations or liability of any other member of the Audit Committee or the Board.
REPORT
The Audit Committee Report is on page 34 of this proxy statement.
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COMPENSATION COMMITTEE
CURRENT COMMITTEE MEMBERS
[MISSING IMAGE: tm223573d2-icon_tickpn.gif]All members of the Compensation Committee are independent

Beatriz V. Infante, Chair

Bruns H. Grayson

Krish A. Prabhu
KEY RESPONSIBILITIES
As described more fully in its charter, the Compensation Committee’s responsibilities include, among other things:
(i)
reviewing and approving the Company’s compensation plans, practices and policies for directors and executive officers, including a review of any risks arising from compensation practices and policies for employees that are reasonably likely to have a material adverse effect on the Company;
(ii)
reviewing the Company’s succession plans for executive officers, where requested to do so by the Board;
(iii)
making recommendations to the Board regarding the establishment and terms of any incentive compensation or equity-based plans and monitoring their administration;
(iv)
before selecting or receiving advice from a compensation advisor (other than in-house legal counsel), considering various factors relating to the independence of such advisor; and
(v)
reviewing the Company’s culture and policies and strategies related to human capital management, including with respect to diversity and inclusion initiatives, pay equity, talent and performance management and employee engagement.
The Compensation Committee may delegate its authority under its charter to one or more subcommittees or members of management, consistent with applicable law and SEC and Nasdaq rules. Specifically, the Compensation Committee may delegate to one or more executive officers of the Company the power to grant options or other equity awards pursuant to the Company’s equity plans to certain employees of the Company.
CHARTER
The Compensation Committee operates pursuant to a written charter adopted by the Board that reflects standards and requirements adopted by Nasdaq, a current copy of which is available at investors.ribboncommunications.com/corporate-governance/governance-highlights
REPORT
The Compensation Committee Report is on page 72 of this proxy statement.
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NOMINATING & CORPORATE GOVERNANCE COMMITTEE
CURRENT COMMITTEE MEMBERS
[MISSING IMAGE: tm223573d2-icon_tickpn.gif]All members of the N&CG Committee are independent

Bruns H. Grayson, Chair

Stewart Ewing, Jr.

Tanya Tamone
KEY RESPONSIBILITIES
As described more fully in its charter, the Nominating & Corporate Governance Committee’s responsibilities include, among other things:
(i)
identifying, screening and reviewing individuals qualified to serve as directors, consistent with criteria approved by the Board, and recommending to the Board candidates for:
(a)
nomination for election by the stockholders, and
(b)
any Board vacancies that are to be filled by the Board, subject to any rights regarding the selection of directors by holders of preferred shares and any other contractual or other commitments of the Company;
(ii)
developing and recommending to the Board, overseeing the implementation and effectiveness of, and recommending modifications as appropriate to, a set of corporate governance guidelines applicable to the Company;
(iii)
reviewing annually with the Board the composition of the Board as a whole and a succession plan in the event one or more directors ceases to serve for any reason;
(iv)
overseeing the annual self-evaluation of the Board, its committees, individual directors and management;
(v)
identifying appropriate director development and continuing education opportunities and making recommendations to the Board as appropriate; and
(vi)
reviewing the Company’s strategies, activities, policies and communications regarding ESG related matters and making recommendations to the Board as appropriate.
CHARTER
The Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee operates pursuant to a written charter adopted by the Board that reflects standards and requirements adopted by Nasdaq, a current copy of which is available at investors.ribboncommunications.com/corporate-
governance/governance-highlights
TECHNOLOGY & INNOVATION COMMITTEE
CURRENT COMMITTEE MEMBERS
[MISSING IMAGE: tm223573d2-icon_tickpn.gif]All members of the T&I Committee are independent

Mariano S. de Beer, Chair

Beatriz V. Infante

Krish A. Prabhu
KEY RESPONSIBILITIES
As described more fully in its charter, the Technology & Innovation Committee’s responsibilities include, among other things, reviewing and discussing with the Company’s management:
(i)
the Company’s overall corporate strategy and approach to leverage technological and commercial innovation to accomplish the financial and market goals established by the Company including business performance, market share growth and competitive leadership;
(ii)
significant investments in technology and software by the Company;
(iii)
technology risks, opportunities and trends that could significantly affect the Company and the businesses in which it operates; and
(iv)
the direction and effectiveness of the Company’s research and development operations.
CHARTER
The Technology and Innovation Committee operates pursuant to a written charter adopted by the Board, a current copy of which is available at investors.ribboncommunications.com/corporate-
governance/governance-highlights
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Director Nomination Process
The Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee screens and recommends candidates for nomination by the full Board, other than those directors designated pursuant to the Stockholders Agreement. There are no specific minimum qualifications for a recommended nominee to our Board; however, the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee considers, among other skills and criteria, the following for nomination as a director:

demonstrated business knowledge, technical skills and experience;

an ability to exercise sound judgment in matters that relate to our current and long-term objectives;

commitment to understanding us and our industry and to regularly attend and participate in meetings of our Board and its committees;

a reputation for integrity, honesty and adherence to high ethical standards;

diversity of background and other desired qualities;

the ability and experience to understand the sometimes conflicting interests of our various constituencies and to act in the interests of all stockholders; and

the absence of any conflict of interest that would impair the nominee’s ability to represent the interest of all our stockholders and to fulfill the responsibilities of being a director.
In considering whether to recommend any particular candidate for inclusion in our Board’s slate of recommended director nominees, the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee applies the criteria generally set forth in the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee Charter. The process followed by the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee to identify and evaluate director candidates includes requests to our Board members and others for recommendations, meetings from time to time to evaluate biographical information and background material relating to potential candidates and interviews of selected candidates by members of the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee and our Board. Our Board believes that the backgrounds and qualifications of its directors, considered as a group, should provide a composite mix of experience, knowledge and abilities that will allow our Board to fulfill its responsibilities. In identifying potential director candidates, the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee and the Board also focus on ensuring that the Board reflects diversity, including in experiences, backgrounds and skills. The Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee has the authority to engage independent advisors to assist in the process of identifying and evaluating director candidates, but has not engaged any such advisors to date.
Stockholder Nominations and Recommendations of Director Candidates
Stockholders who wish to recommend candidates to the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee for consideration as potential director candidates should send their recommendation to:
[MISSING IMAGE: tm223573d2-icon_mailpn.jpg]
The Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee
c/o Corporate Secretary
Ribbon Communications Inc.
6500 Chase Oaks Blvd., Suite 100
Plano, Texas 75023
In considering candidates submitted by stockholders, the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee will take into consideration the current make-up of the Board, what skills should be added (if any) and the qualifications of the candidate. The Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee will consider director candidates recommended by stockholders in the same manner as candidates recommended by the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee, as described above in “Director Nomination Process.
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Stockholders who wish to nominate director candidates or propose business to be considered directly at an annual meeting in accordance with the procedures set forth in our by-laws should follow the procedures set forth under the sections entitled “Stockholder Nominations and Proposals for Presentation at 2023 Annual Meeting.”
Board Leadership Structure
The Company’s Corporate Governance Guidelines provide that the Board leadership structure that is most appropriate for the Company at this time is a non-executive Chairman. The Board evaluates its leadership structure and role in risk oversight on an ongoing basis and makes decisions on the basis of what it considers to be best for the Company at any given point in time. Currently, our Board leadership structure consists of a non-executive Chairman, a separate CEO, a lead independent director and strong committee chairs. The Board believes its leadership structure provides for appropriate independence between the Board and management because the current leadership structure offers the following benefits:

increasing the independent oversight of Ribbon and enhancing our Board’s objective evaluation of our CEO;

focusing the CEO on company operations instead of Board administration;

providing the CEO with an experienced sounding board;

providing greater opportunities for communication between stockholders and our Board;

enhancing the independent and objective assessment of risk by our Board; and

providing an independent spokesperson for our Company.
Executive Sessions of the Board
The Company’s Board is structured to promote independence and is designed so that independent directors exercise oversight of the Company’s management and key issues related to strategy and risk. Under our Corporate Governance Guidelines, our independent directors are required to meet in executive session at regularly scheduled Board meetings without management present to discuss any matters the independent directors consider appropriate. We expect the Board to have a least four executive sessions each year.
Additional Governance Matters
Code of Ethics
Our Board has adopted a written Amended and Restated Code of Conduct, which qualifies as a “code of ethics” as defined by SEC rules. The Amended and Restated Code of Conduct is intended to provide guidance on the conduct expected of Ribbon’s employees, officers and directors in the interests of preserving Ribbon’s reputation for integrity, accountability and fair dealing. To ensure that our business is conducted in a consistently legal and ethical manner, our Amended and Restated Code of Conduct applies to all of our directors, officers and employees.
We intend to disclose any amendment to or waiver of a provision of the Amended and Restated Code of Conduct that applies to our principal executive officer, principal financial officer, principal accounting officer or controller, or persons performing similar functions, by posting such information on our website at www.ribboncommunications.com.
Public Availability of Corporate Governance Documents
For more corporate governance information, you are invited to access our key corporate governance documents, including our Corporate Governance Guidelines, Amended and Restated Code of Conduct and the charters of our Audit Committee, Compensation Committee, Nominating and
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Corporate Governance Committee, and Technology and Innovation Committee on our corporate website at www.ribboncommunications.com, in the section entitled Company — Investor Relations — Corporate Governance — Governance Highlights. The references in this Proxy Statement to our corporate website are not intended to, and do not, incorporate by reference into this Proxy Statement any materials contained on such website.
Stockholder Communications with the Board of Directors
Stockholders may communicate with our Board by contacting our Investor Relations Department:
[MISSING IMAGE: tm223573d2-icon_mailpn.jpg]
Investor Relations Department
Ribbon Communications Inc.
6500 Chase Oaks Blvd., Suite 100
Plano, Texas 75023
[MISSING IMAGE: tm223573d2-icon_phonepn.jpg]
(978) 614-8050
[MISSING IMAGE: tm223573d2-icon_mailcompn.jpg]
ir@rbbn.com
Our Investor Relations Department will review all such communications and will forward to the Lead Independent Director all communications that raise an issue appropriate for consideration by our Board.
Transactions with Related Persons
The Board adopted a written related person transaction policy, which sets forth our policies and procedures for the review, approval or ratification of any transaction required to be reported in our filings with the SEC. Under the policy, any potential related person transactions must be reported to our Chief Legal Officer, who is responsible for determining whether such transactions constitute related person transactions subject to the policy. Our Chief Legal Officer is required to present to the Audit Committee each proposed related person transaction. The Audit Committee may approve or ratify the transaction only if the Audit Committee determines that, under all of the circumstances, the transaction is in the best interests of the Company and its stockholders, as the Audit Committee determines in good faith. The Audit Committee may, in its sole discretion, impose such conditions as it deems appropriate on the Company or the related person in connection with approval of the related person transaction. If the Audit Committee does not approve or ratify a related person transaction, such transaction will not be entered into or will be terminated, as the Audit Committee directs.
The following are certain transactions, arrangements and relationships with our directors, executive officers and stockholders owning 5% or more of our outstanding common stock since January 1, 2021.
Stockholders Agreement
On March 3, 2020, the Company entered into the Stockholders Agreement with the JPM Stockholders and Swarth. The Stockholders Agreement provides the JPM Stockholders and Swarth with certain Board and Board committee designation rights as described above under “Corporate Governance — Board Composition and Stockholders Agreement” and “Corporate Governance — Board Committees,” and contains certain voting commitments as described in “Proposal 1 — Election of Directors.”
Standstill Restrictions
The Stockholders Agreement contains certain standstill provisions restricting the JPM Stockholders and Swarth from acquiring (or seeking or making any proposal or offer with respect to acquiring) additional shares of Ribbon common stock or any security convertible into Ribbon common stock or any assets, indebtedness or businesses of Ribbon common stock or any of its subsidiaries. Certain customary exclusions apply, and acquisition of shares of Ribbon common stock by a Ribbon stockholder will be permitted so long as such acquisition would not result in such stockholder and
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its affiliates beneficially owning a number of Ribbon common stock that is greater than 120% of the number of voting shares of Ribbon common stock held by the JPM Stockholders or Swarth, as applicable, on March 3, 2020 (or such lower number as specified in the Stockholders Agreement).
The standstill restrictions apply from the date of the Stockholders Agreement until the earlier of (i) the entry by Ribbon into a definitive agreement constituting a change of control transaction as discussed in further detail below and (ii) such date as the JPM Stockholders or Swarth, as applicable, no longer has a right to designate any members of the Board.
Change of Control
Without the approval of a majority of the disinterested directors serving on the Board, neither the JPM Stockholders nor Swarth may enter into or affirmatively support any transaction resulting in a change of control of Ribbon in which any such stockholder receives per share consideration as a holder of Ribbon common stock in excess of that to be received by other holders of Ribbon common stock.
Transfer Restrictions
Without the approval of a majority of the disinterested directors serving on the Board, until March 3, 2023, no JPM Stockholder nor Swarth may transfer any shares of Ribbon common stock that it beneficially owns if such transfer involves more than 15% of the outstanding shares of Ribbon common stock or if the transferee would own 15% or more of the outstanding shares of Ribbon common stock following such transfer, other than to a permitted transferee that agrees to be subject to the Stockholders Agreement or pursuant to a regulatory requirement.
Termination
The Stockholders Agreement will terminate by mutual consent of Ribbon, a majority in interest of the JPM Stockholders and Swarth (including the approval by a majority of Independent Directors) or with respect to either the JPM Stockholders or Swarth, on the date that such stockholder ceases to beneficially own 2% or more of the issued and outstanding Ribbon common stock.
Registration Rights Agreement
On March 3, 2020, the Company entered into a First Amended and Restated Registration Rights Agreement (the “Registration Rights Agreement”) with the JPM Stockholders and Swarth.
Under the Registration Rights Agreement, certain holders of Ribbon common stock were granted certain registration rights, including:
(i)
the right to request that Ribbon file an automatic shelf registration statement and effect unlimited underwritten offerings pursuant to such shelf registration statement;
(ii)
unlimited demand registrations; and
(iii)
unlimited piggyback registration rights that allow holders of registrable shares to require that shares of Ribbon common stock owned by such holders be included in certain registration statements filed by Ribbon, in each case subject to the transfer restrictions contained in the Stockholders Agreement.
In connection with these registration rights, Ribbon has agreed to effect certain procedural actions, including taking certain actions to properly effect any registration statement or offering and to keep the participating Ribbon stockholders reasonably informed with adequate opportunity to comment and review, as well as customary indemnification and contribution agreements.
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Director Compensation
The Compensation Committee reviews the compensation of our non-employee directors periodically and, in consultation its independent compensation consultant regarding compensation on levels for peer companies and the broader market, recommends changes to the Board when it deems appropriate.
In August 2021, the Board approved a new Non-Employee Director Compensation Policy (the “Director Compensation Policy”). Under the Director Compensation Policy, all fees payable for service on the Board and its committees remained unchanged except: (1) the annual cash fee payable to the Chairman of the Board was reduced from $100,000 to $50,000 (Mr. Shani, as Chairman of the Board, waived receipt of the cash fee in 2021); and (2) an additional annual fee was added for service as lead independent director (Mr. Grayson, as lead independent director, waived receipt of the additional cash fee for service as lead independent director in 2021). In addition, the Director Compensation Policy permits a director to elect to receive all or 50% of the cash fees payable to her or him in shares of the Company’s common stock and further permits a director to defer receipt of all or 50% of any shares payable to her or him upon vesting of equity awards until the 15th day of the month following the date on which the electing director ceases to serve on the Board (or earlier in connection with a change in control as defined under the Director Compensation Policy). Pursuant to the Director Compensation Policy, Mr. Grayson has elected, effective as of the first quarter of 2022, to receive 100% of the cash fees payable to him in shares of the Company’s common stock.
The following table describes the components of the non-employee directors’ compensation for 2021:
Compensation Element
Compensation Payment
Annual Retainer $60,000(1)(2)
Annual Equity Retainer $120,000(1) in restricted stock units that vest after one year (or, if earlier, on the date of the next annual meeting if the non-employee director does not stand for re-election or is not re-elected by stockholders of the Company)
Committee Fees(3)
Audit Committee
$15,000
Compensation Committee
$10,000
Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee
$5,000
Technology and Innovation Committee
$5,000
Non-Executive Chairman Fee(3) $50,000(2)
Lead Independent Director Fee(3) $50,000(4)
Chair Fees(3)
Audit Committee
$25,000
Compensation Committee
$17,000
Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee
$10,000
Technology and Innovation Committee
$10,000
New Director Retainer New non-employee directors will receive a pro rata annual equity award of restricted stock units, with the proration based on the number of months of service until the month of the Company’s next annual stockholders meeting
Stock Ownership Guidelines Directors are expected to hold all of the shares of the Company’s common stock granted to them and to maintain such amount of stock ownership throughout their tenure as a director
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(1)
Mr. Smith is not entitled to any annual director equity grants. In lieu of such grants, Mr. Smith is entitled to an annual cash retainer of $160,000. As described below, Mr. Smith waived receipt of this cash retainer effective April 1, 2020. Any compensation paid to Mr. Smith will be paid directly to Heritage PE (OEP) III L.P. (“Heritage III”).
(2)
Mr. Shani waived receipt of any cash compensation for his service as Chairman of the Board in 2021.
(3)
Compensation for service as the chairman of the Board, lead independent director or a committee member is in addition to the compensation paid for Board and committee service.
(4)
The fee for service as lead independent director was approved in September 2021, however Mr. Grayson waived payment of the pro rata portion of this fee for 2021.
Total Director Compensation for 2021
The following table contains information on compensation earned by each non-employee member of our Board during 2021:
Director
Fees Earned or Paid in Cash
($)
Stock Awards(1)
($)
Total(2)
($)
Mariano S. de Beer 67,500 120,004 187,504
R. Stewart Ewing, Jr 105,000 120,004 225,004
Bruns H. Grayson 100,000 120,004 220,004
Beatriz V. Infante 107,000 120,004 227,004
Krish A. Prabhu 75,000 120,004 195,004
Shaul Shani(3) 120,004 120,004
Richard W. Smith(4)
Tanya Tamone 65,000 120,004 185,004
(1)
The amounts in this column do not reflect compensation actually received by the applicable director. Instead, the amounts reflect the grant date fair value of restricted stock awards, as calculated in accordance with Accounting Standards Codification 718, Compensation — Stock-Based Compensation (“ASC 718”).
The amounts reported for each member of the Board represents the grant date fair value of his or her grants during 2021. The grants made to each director during 2021 were as follows:
Director
Restricted Stock Units
(#)
Grant Date Fair Value
($)
Mariano S. de Beer 14,797(a) 120,004
R. Stewart Ewing, Jr. 14,797(a) 120,004
Bruns H. Grayson 14,797(a) 120,004
Beatriz V. Infante 14,797(a) 120,004
Krish A. Prabhu 14,797(a) 120,004
Shaul Shani 14,797(a) 120,004
Richard W. Smith
Tanya Tamone 14,797(a) 120,004
(a)
Annual director RSU award granted on June 15, 2021 that vests on June 15, 2022 or, if earlier, on the date of the next annual meeting if the non-employee director does not stand for re-election or is not re-elected by stockholders of the Company.
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As of December 31, 2021, our non-employee directors (serving as of that date) held an aggregate of 103,579 unvested restricted stock units as follows
Director
Number of Unvested RSUs Held as of
December 31, 2021
(#)
Mariano S. de Beer 14,797
R. Stewart Ewing, Jr. 14,797
Bruns H. Grayson 14,797
Beatriz V. Infante 14,797
Krish A. Prabhu 14,797
Shaul Shani 14,797
Richard W. Smith
Tanya Tamone 14,797
(2)
Non-employee directors also are eligible to be reimbursed for reasonable out-of-pocket expenses incurred in connection with attendance at our Board or committee meetings.
(3)
Mr. Shani waived receipt of any cash compensation for his service as director in 2021.
(4)
Mr. Smith is not entitled to any equity compensation in connection with his services as a member of the Board. Effective April 1, 2020, Mr. Smith waived receipt of any compensation in connection with his service as a director.
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AUDIT MATTERS
2
Proposal 2 — Ratification of the Appointment of Independent Registered Public Accounting Firm
The Audit Committee of the Board of Directors has appointed Deloitte & Touche LLP (“Deloitte”) as the Company’s independent registered public accounting firm for the fiscal year ending December 31, 2022. Deloitte has acted as the independent registered accounting firm of Ribbon since the closing of the GENBAND merger in 2017, and of Sonus Networks, Inc. from August 2005 until the closing of the GENBAND merger. We are asking our stockholders to ratify this appointment. Although ratification of our appointment of Deloitte is not required, we value the opinions of our stockholders and believe that stockholder ratification of our appointment is a good corporate governance practice. If this proposal is not approved at the 2022 Annual Meeting, our Audit Committee may consider this fact when it appoints our independent registered public accounting firm for the fiscal year ending December 31, 2023. Even if the proposal is approved at the 2022 Annual Meeting, the Audit Committee may, at its discretion, direct the appointment of a different independent registered public accounting firm at any time during the year if it determines that such change would be in the interests of the Company and its stockholders.
Representatives of Deloitte are expected to virtually attend the 2022 Annual Meeting and will have the opportunity to make a statement and be available to respond to appropriate questions by stockholders.
PROPOSAL
2
The Board of Directors recommends that stockholders vote FOR
the ratification of the appointment of Deloitte & Touche LLP as our independent registered public accounting firm for 2022.
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Deloitte Fees
The following is a summary and description of fees for services provided by Deloitte in 2021 and 2020:
Fiscal Year Ended
Fee Category
2021
($)
2020
($)
Audit fees(1) 2,551,006 2,518,608
Audit-related fees(2) 15,000 484,450
Tax fees(3) 150,494 304,326
All other fees(4) 3,790
Total
2,720,290 3,307,384
(1)
Audit fees. These amounts for 2021 represent fees for the audit of our consolidated financial statements included in our 2021 Annual Report on Form 10-K (the “2021 Annual Report”), the review of financial statements included in our Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, the audit of our internal control over financial reporting and the services that an independent auditor would customarily provide in connection with subsidiary audits, statutory requirements, regulatory filing and similar engagements for the fiscal year, such as consents and assistance with review of documents filed with the SEC. Audit fees also include advice on accounting matters that may arise in connection with, or as a result of, the audit or the review of periodic consolidated financial statements and statutory audits that non-U.S. jurisdictions require.
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(2)
Audit-related fees. Audit-related fees consist of fees related to due diligence services and accounting consultations regarding the application of generally accepted accounting principles to proposed transactions.
(3)
Tax fees. Tax fees consist of professional services for tax compliance, tax advice and tax planning. These services include assistance regarding federal, state and international tax compliance, value-added tax compliance, and transfer pricing advice and planning.
(4)
All other fees. All other fees consist of professional products and services other than the services reported above, including fees for our subscription to Deloitte’s online accounting research tool.
Policy on Audit Committee Pre-Approval of Audit and Non-Audit Services
The Audit Committee has adopted a policy to pre-approve audit and permissible non-audit services provided by the independent registered public accounting firm. These services may include audit services, audit-related services, tax services and other services. Prior to engagement of the independent registered public accounting firm for the next year’s audit, the independent registered public accounting firm and our management submit a list of services expected to be rendered during that year for each of the four categories of services to the Audit Committee for approval. Pre-approval is generally provided for up to one year and any pre-approval is detailed as to the particular service or category of services. The independent registered public accounting firm and our management periodically report to the Audit Committee regarding the extent of services provided by the independent registered public accounting firm in accordance with this pre-approval process. The Audit Committee may also pre-approve particular services on a case-by-case basis. The Audit Committee pre-approved all of the services and fees of Deloitte set forth above in accordance with such policy.
Our Audit Committee requires the regular rotation of the lead audit partner and concurring partner as required by Section 203 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 and is responsible for recommending to our Board policies for hiring employees or former employees of the independent registered public accounting firm. The Audit Committee has determined that the provision of services described above to us by Deloitte is compatible with maintaining Deloitte’s independence.
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Audit Committee Report
The information contained in this report shall not be deemed to be “soliciting material” or “filed” or incorporated by reference in future filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, or subject to the liabilities of Section 18 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, except to the extent that we specifically request that it be treated as soliciting material or specifically incorporate it by reference into a document filed under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, or the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended.
We reviewed Ribbon’s audited financial statements for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2021 and discussed these financial statements with Ribbon’s management, including a discussion of the quality, not just the acceptability, of the accounting principles, the reasonableness of significant judgments and the clarity of disclosures in the financial statements. Ribbon’s management is responsible for Ribbon’s financial reporting process, including its system of internal controls, and for the preparation of consolidated financial statements in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles. Ribbon’s independent registered public accounting firm, Deloitte, is responsible for performing an independent audit of Ribbon’s financial statements in accordance with standards of the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (United States) (“PCAOB”) and issuing a report on those financial statements and issuing a report on the effectiveness of Ribbon’s internal control over financial reporting as of the end of the fiscal year. Our responsibility is to monitor and review these processes. We also reviewed and discussed with Deloitte the audited financial statements and the matters required by the SEC and PCAOB.
Deloitte provided us with, and we reviewed, the written disclosures and the letter required by the applicable requirements of the PCAOB that independent registered public accounting firms annually to disclose in writing all relationships that in the independent registered public accounting firm’s professional opinion may reasonably be thought to bear on independence, to confirm their independence and to engage in a discussion of independence. In addition to engaging in this discussion with Deloitte regarding its independence, we also considered whether Deloitte’s provision of other, non-audit related services to Ribbon is compatible with maintaining Deloitte’s independence.
Based on our discussions with management and Deloitte, and our review of information provided by management and Deloitte, we recommended to the Ribbon Board of Directors that the audited financial statements be included in Ribbon’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2021.
Submitted by,
THE AUDIT COMMITTEE
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R. Stewart Ewing, Jr. (Chair)
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Bruns H. Grayson
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Beatriz V. Infante
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EXECUTIVE OFFICERS
The executive officers of the Company as of the date hereof are listed below:
Name
Age
Position
Bruce W. McClelland 55 President and Chief Executive Officer
Miguel (“Mick”) Lopez
62 Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer
Steven Bruny 63 Executive Vice President, Sales — Americas Region
Sam Bucci 57 Executive Vice President and General Manager, IP Optical Networks Business Unit
Patrick Macken 48 Executive Vice President, Chief Legal Officer and Corporate Secretary
Steve McCaffery 55 Executive Vice President, Sales — EMEA and APAC Regions
Anthony Scarfo 61 Executive Vice President and General Manager, Cloud and Edge Business Unit
Biographical information regarding each executive officer other than Bruce W. McClelland is set forth below. Mr. McClelland’s biographical information is set forth above under the section entitled “Proposal 1 — Election of Directors.”
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AGE 62
MIGUEL LOPEZ
EXECUTIVE VICE PRESIDENT, CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER
BACKGROUND
Ribbon Communications Inc.

Executive Vice President, Chief Financial Officer (July 2020 to present)