Sheryl Sandberg Steps Down as COO of Facebook Parent Meta After 14 Years

“Lean In” author, who joined Facebook in 2008, will continue to serve on company’s board of directors

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Meta COO Sheryl Sandberg announced Wednesday in a post to her Facebook page that she is stepping down after 14 years at the company.

Sandberg will continue to serve on Meta’s board of directors. She said she will be focusing more on her foundation and philanthropic work. Her direct reports will transition in coming months as she prepares for her departure in the fall.

“Today, I am sharing the news that after 14 years, I will be leaving Meta,” Sandberg said in a post. “When I first met Mark, I was not really looking for a new job – and I could have never predicted how meeting him would change my life. … Sitting by Mark’s side for these 14 years has been the honor and privilege of a lifetime. Mark is a true visionary and a caring leader. He sometimes says that we grew up together, and we have. He was just 23 and I was already 38 when we met, but together we have been through the massive ups and downs of running this company, as well as his marriage to the magnificent Priscilla, the sorrow of their miscarriages and the joy of their childbirths, the sudden loss of Dave, my engagement to Tom, and so much more. In the critical moments of my life, in the highest highs and in the depths of true lows, I have never had to turn to Mark, because he was already there.”

During her time at Facebook, now Meta, Sandberg published bestseller “Lean In,” a book about women and workplace inequities. In her farewell post, Sandberg wrote about social media’s changing role in society.

“To say it hasn’t always been easy is an understatement,” Sandberg wrote. “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 privacy and keeps people safe. Just as I believe wholeheartedly in our mission, our industry, and the overwhelmingly positive power of connecting people, I and the dedicated people of Meta have felt our responsibilities deeply. I know that the extraordinary team at Meta will continue to work tirelessly to rise to these challenges and keep making our company and our community better. I also know that our platforms will continue to be an engine of growth for the businesses around the world that rely on us.”

CEO Mark Zuckerberg responded to her post: “The end of an era. In the 14 years we’ve worked together, you’ve architected our ads business, hired great people, forged our management culture, and taught me how to run a company. I’m going to miss working alongside you every day, but grateful to have you as a lifelong friend. Thank you for all you’ve done for me and my family, for our company, and for millions of people around the world. You’re a superstar.”