In a post on the social media platform, Zuckerberg said he’d been trying to recruit Chenault for years:
He has unique expertise in areas I believe Facebook needs to learn and improve — customer service, direct commerce, and building a trusted brand. Ken also has a strong sense of social mission and the perspective that comes from running an important public company for decades.
Chenault, like Zuckerberg and COO Sheryl Sandberg, is a Harvard alumnus, and as a powerful player in corporate America, is perhaps an unsurprising choice. After a 17-year tenure, he retires from American Express on Feb. 1, and will become Facebook’s newest director four days later. According to Facebook’s announcement, he also serves on the boards of IBM, Procter & Gamble, the Harvard Corporation, and many nonprofit organizations. He has a BA in history from Bowdoin College and a JD from Harvard.