COO Sheryl Sandberg announces exit from Meta, worked 14 years at Facebook

Image Credit Wikimedia Author World Economic Forum from Cologny, Switzerland

Sheryl Sandberg has announced that she is leaving Facebook, in a post on the social media platform, this fall. She has been working closely with founder Mark Zuckerberg and has worked there for 14 years. She is stepping down from the post of Chief Operating Office of parent Meta, but will remain on the board. She said that she wanted to concentrate on philanthropy.

Ms. Sandberg has remained one of the high profile women in tech. She was a successful ad executive at Google when Mark Zuckerberg asked her to join his startup, in 2008. In her lengthy post on Facebook, on Wednesday, she said that she has been “sitting by Mark’s side for these 14 years.” She also spoke of the work they had achieved together and also shared that he (and his wife Priscilla) had been with her in her life “in the highest highs and in the depths of true lows.”

Ms. Sandberg spoke of the deep impact that Facebook and its other companies including Instagram had in the world and praised the thousands of “brilliant and dedicated people at Meta” and called it a privilege to work with them.

Mark Zuckerberg replied to her post and called it the “end of an era.” He said that she had “architected our ads business.” He also mentioned that she had “hired great people” and was responsible for their company culture. He also credited her with teaching him “how to run a company” and described her as a “lifelong friend” and a “superstar.”

Javier Olivan will take over her role when she leaves Meta. While at Facebook, she had faced criticism for putting profits above safety as well as for not doing enough to curtail the spread of misinformation. She was also at the helm when incidents that were termed as crises occurred including what was reported as Russia’s interference in the 2016 election, the 2018 Cambridge Analytica scandal and others.

Apart from her career in tech, Sheryl Sandberg is known as the extremely popular author of Lean In, written in 2013. She unexpectedly lost her husband Dave Goldberg in the summer of 2015. She wrote another book, in 2017, after his death called “Option B.” She will be getting married again in the summer of 2022.

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