- Sandberg did not disclose the reason for her departure from the company
- She only said she plans to focus on her philanthropic work
- Javier Olivan -- the company's Chief Growth Officer, will become its next COO
Facebook-parent Meta COO Sheryl Sandberg has stepped down from her post, the company confirmed on Wednesday. She did not disclose the reason for her departure from the company. In a Facebook post, Sandberg said she plans to focus on her philanthropic work.
"The debate around social media has changed beyond recognition since those early days. To say it hasn't always been easy is an understatement. But it should be hard. The products we make have a huge impact, so we have the responsibility to build them in a way that protects the privacy and keeps people safe," Sandberg wrote.
Meanwhile, in a Facebook post, Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg said that Sandberg will continue to serve on the company's board of directors.
Javier Olivan - The next Meta COO
Zuckerberg confirmed Javier Olivan -- the company's Chief Growth Officer, will become its next COO, but his role will be "different from what Sheryl has done" and "a more traditional COO role."
"I think Meta has reached the point where it makes sense for our product and business groups to be more closely integrated, rather than having all the business and operations functions organized separately from our products," he said.
Who was Sheryl Sandberg?
Sandberg helped Meta turn its business from a startup to a digital advertising empire while also taking the blame for some of its biggest missteps. She served as a chief operating officer at the social media giant for 14 years. She joined from Google in 2008, four years before Facebook went public.
As the company’s second most-recognized face — after CEO Mark Zuckerberg — Sandberg has also become a polarizing figure amid revelations of how some of her business decisions for Facebook helped propagate misinformation and hate speech.
As one of the most prominent female executives in the tech industry, she was also often criticized for not doing enough both for women and for others harmed by Facebook’s products. Her public-speaking expertise, her seemingly effortless ability to bridge the worlds of tech, business and politics served as a sharp contrast to Zuckerberg, especially in Facebook’s early years.
While Sandberg has long been Zuckerberg’s No. 2, even sitting next to him — pre-pandemic, at least — in the company’s Menlo Park, California, headquarters, she also had a very public-facing job, meeting with lawmakers, holding focus groups and speaking out on issues such as women in the workplace and, most recently, abortion.
Sandberg, who lost her husband Dave Goldberg suddenly in 2015, said she is “not entirely sure what the future will bring.”
(With inputs from agencies)