Facebook Nominates Peggy Alford To Become First Black Woman On The Company's Board Of Directors
Alford's nomination comes a year after former American Express CEO Kenneth Chenault was added to the tech company's board.
In two years, social media juggernaut Facebook has made strides to diversify the company's board of directors.
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Now, USA Today reports Facebook has nominated technology executive Peggy Alford to its board. On May 30, she will become the first Black woman in the company's history to serve on the nine-member board of directors.
"Peggy is one of those rare people who’s an expert across many different areas — from business management to finance operations to product development," Facebook's CEO Mark Zuckerberg said in a statement. "I know she will have great ideas that help us address both the opportunities and challenges facing our company."
As California law demands, companies must have at least one woman on the board of directors to improve diversity. Companies with six or more board members must have three women.
Fast Company reports Facebook has until 2021 to meet the state's new requirements. The social media company already has two women serving: Facebook's Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg and Susan D. Desmond-Hellmann, CEO of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Alford would become the third.
Currently, Alford is the senior vice president of Core Markets of PayPal Holdings. In addition to being a board member at Facebook, the longtime tech exec is a member of the Board of Directors of the Macerich Company. She obtained a bachelors degree in accounting and business administration from the University of Dayton.
"What excites me about the opportunity to join Facebook's board is the company's drive and desire to face hard issues head-on while continuing to improve on the amazing connection experiences they have built over the years," said Alford in a statement. "I look forward to working with Mark and the other directors as the company builds new and inspiring ways to help people connect and build community."
However, it isn't the first time Alford worked with Facebook. In 2017, she joined the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, Zuckerberg and wife Priscilla Chan's philanthropic organization, to serve as the chief financial officer and head of operations.
For the last two to three years, Facebook has come under fire for primarily fueling the rise of white nationalism during the 2016 presidential election. The company committed to rid its platform of hate speech when it banned accounts identified as racist last month, as reported by Wired.
White nationalism, however, is just one of the issues facing Facebook. Like many tech companies, Facebook has been seen as a boys club where only white and Asian men can ascend to the top. Black women representation is nearly nonexistent. About 278 out of 20,000 or 1.4% of its U.S. workforce are Black women. Alford's nomination is a step in the right direction.
Before working with Zuckerberg, she was president, general manager and the chief financial officer at eBay and Rent.com.
Facebook made history last year when it added former American Express CEO Kenneth Chenault to its board. He is the first Black person to serve on the company's board of directors.
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