For a long time Facebook was not exactly known for being the most inclusive company when it came to women, especially on its board of directors, but the company has been trying to rectify that problem, albeit slowly.
Facebook has named Susan Desmond-Hellmann, chancellor of the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) as its second female director to its board, it was announced Wednesday. She will be joinging Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, who was added to the board in June 2012, as the only other woman on the social network's board.
"Sue has a great track record of building and managing a diverse set of organizations, so her insights will be valuable as we continue to expand into new areas," Mark Zuckerberg , founder and CEO of Facebook, said in statement. "Her experience shaping public policy and operating public companies fits well with the rest of the board and will make us an even stronger company."
Desmond-Hellmann has been the Chancellor at UCSF since 2009 where she “oversees all aspects of the university and medical center's strategy and operations.”
Prior to that role, she served as the president of product development at Genentech, where she worked for 14 years. She is also a medical doctor who is board-certified in internal medicine and medical oncology.
In addition to being on the board at Facebook, Desmond-Hellmann is also on the board of directors for Procter & Gamble, and she also serves as a trustee for the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, a nonprofit medical research organization.
"I've always been drawn to organizations that do ground-breaking work," Desmond-Hellmann said in a statement. "Facebook has an ambitious mission and long-term vision of innovation that is transforming how people connect with one another. I'm proud to be part of a company that is serving such an important purpose in the world."
Besides Zuckerberg, Sandberg and Desmond-Hellmann, the other members of the Facebook board are Marc Andreessen of Andreessen Horowitz; Erskine Bowles , president emeritus at the University of North Carolina; James Breyer of Accel Partners; Donald E. Graham who is chairman and CEO, The Washington Post Company; Reed Hastings, the chairman and CEO of Netflix; and Peter Thiel of Founders Fund.
The news of Facebook's second female director comes on the same day that Sandberg launched LeanIn.org, an organization that allows women to join and create “circles” for the purpose of surrounding themselves with like-minded, ambitious women.
Sandberg’s new book, entitled Lean In, is set to released next Monday.
The term “lean in” refers to Sandberg’s observations that women tend to “lean back” from their careers at the most critical points for fear that they won’t be able to balance career obligations with their obligations as wives and mothers.
(Image source: http://www.forbes.com)