Jesse Jackson grills Mark Zuckerberg on Facebook’s lack of diversity
The civil rights leader wants more color in the social network's boardroom.
Reverend Jesse Jackson took Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg to task about the company’s apparent lack of diversity during the social network’s annual shareholder meeting on Thursday.
The activist got right to the point when he grilled the uber-rich head honcho.
“Beyond the board, the C-suites, the top 15 employees are white, and that does not represent a random — it represents some lack of intentionality to be inclusive,” he said during the Q&A portion of the meeting before questioning Zuckerberg about Facebook’s efforts to stop election manipulation.
“We appreciate your commitment as a shareholder in always coming to our meetings,” Zuckerberg responded before throwing the question to his COO Sheryl Sandberg.
“We agree with you that we need more diversity, it’s something we’re very committed to,” she responded. “This is really codifying and making a public commitment to something we’re already doing.”
She revealed that the company is partnering with the Service Employees International Union to officially adopt the “diverse slate approach” when appointing future board members, which requires managers to consider candidates from “underrepresented backgrounds.”
Facebook’s most recent diversity report stated the company’s workforce was seriously lacking in melanin with only 3 percent black and 5 percent Hispanic employees last year while women only making up 35 percent of its employees.
The company hired its first black board member, former American Express CEO Kenneth Chenault in January.