Facebook comms chief Caryn Marooney to exit after 8 years

She is working with CEO Mark Zuckerberg, COO Sheryl Sandberg, and head of policy and communications Nick Clegg to identify a replacement.

Caryn Marooney
Caryn Marooney

MENLO PARK, CA: Facebook comms chief Caryn Marooney is exiting her role at the social network.

Marooney wrote in a Facebook post that she has decided to step down as leader of the communications group to get back to her "roots" – going deep in tech and product.

She explained that Nick Clegg is now settled in at Facebook, so it feels like the right time to start the transition. Facebook turned heads on both sides of the Atlantic Ocean in October when it hired former U.K. Deputy Prime Minister Clegg as its new head of policy and communications.

Marooney is working with CEO Mark Zuckerberg, COO Sheryl Sandberg, and Clegg to identify a replacement.

Marooney said the move is a hard one because she has "more faith in Facebook than ever."

In 2008, Facebook had 40 million people using the service and was only available in the U.S.

"So much has changed — we are now Facebook, Messenger, Instagram, WhatsApp, AR/VR, Portal — with global data centers and amazing technology and engineering," wrote Marooney. "But so much has stayed the same — there is so much good happening on Facebook and the entire family of apps every day. And for our challenges — we have plans in place and the right people working on them."

Marooney joined Facebook in 2011 after serving as CEO of The OutCast Agency, which she cofounded. While at OutCast, she managed the agency’s Facebook account.

"We started working together when Facebook was just a website and -- from mobile to Instagram to WhatsApp to Messenger and AR/VR -- you've been there every step of the way," Zuckerberg wrote in a comment on Marooney's post. "Thank you for the dedication and brilliance you have brought to Facebook over the years. You should feel proud of everything you've helped to build."

Sandberg also commented on the post, saying that Marooney has "done so much for Facebook" and has been a "wonderful leader and a true friend."

Marooney was a PRWeek Power List honoree in 2014, 2015, 2016, and 2017.

Despite various PR crises, Facebook posted a record $6.9 billion profit for the final three months of 2018 — a 61% rise from the same period a year earlier and way ahead of estimates. Facebook's revenue for the quarter was up 30% to $16.9 billion, according to its latest earnings report. User numbers are also up, according to CNBC.

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