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Facebook names Amex CEO Kenneth Chenault to its board, making him its first black member | Quartz Facebook is making good on its promise that it would add an African-American member to its board of directors. CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced that Kenneth Chenault, the retiring head of American Express, will be joining the board, which currently does not include any people of color, and only two women among its eight members.

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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.


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KOLUMN Magazine celebrates the lives of People of Color by giving our world texture.

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