Around the time of the demise of Jumo, the social network for nonprofits and activists started by Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes, Betabeat got an email from a source intimately familiar with the social media startup sector. “I’m intrigued by the fact that Facebook doesn’t seem to be proving to have the kind of second-act momentum among early employees that PayPal had, and I wonder why that is,” the source wrote. “I don’t have high hopes for Asana, Quora, or Path either, but maybe it’s too early to make a judgment call.”
With the rise of secondary trading, many Facebook employees have already cashed out. The company’s hefty exodus of early employees has been well-documented. Sarah Lacy, writing for TechCrunch, identified the emergence of a “Facebook mafia” as “early and distinct” last year. But with the Facebook-spawned startups still unproven, is it fair to say that yet?
“There is no organized ‘Facebook mafia,’ although more and more former Facebook employees have either started their own companies, joined others or invested together with former colleagues in new ventures,” former Facebook executive Netanel “Net” Jacobsson weighed in via email. “It’s only natural, people who have been working together and know each other and also trust each others judgment regarding new opportunities, that they invest together = social proof. However, to the best of my knowledge there is nothing organized, but friends investing together from time to time.”
The “PayPal mafia” describes the collective of PayPal co-founders and early employees including Peter Thiel, Elon Musk, Max Levchin, Roelaf Botha, Keith Rabois, Reid Hoffman, and others, who Wikipedia says are “often credited with inspiring Web 2.0.” The PayPal mafia invested in each others startups, founded little things like Yelp, LinkedIn and YouTube, and plunked down bucks in promising companies like Flickr and Zynga. The nickname caught on after a 2007 article in Fortune magazine that featured several mafiosos dressed like gangsters.
Xooglers got the same moniker in 2007, three years after Google’s IPO when their stock fully vested. But Google size’s meant those connections were less apparent and more diffuse. Plus, as one purported Xoogler wrote on Quora, “Every time I try to get out, they pull me back in!!”
It may be too early to judge Facebook by the startups it’s spawned just yet. Not everyone can be like Mr. Hoffman, who served as PayPal’s executive vice president when the company was sold to eBay in 2002 . . . then went on to found LinkedIn later that year.
Facebook has an IPO coming up shortly, after which we’ll surely see more from early employees. Academic and entrepreneur Vivek Wadhwa told the Mercury News that the coming flood of capital from “hundreds of millionaires who can fund thousands of startups” might even offset any potential downturn in the overall VC market. Tim Kendall, Facebook’s former director of monetization, thinks Facebook employees may be more entrepreneurial. After a year or so of advising and investing in young companies, Mr. Kendall, who left the company in late 2010, is itching for another taste of the startup life. “[Facebook employees] want to be in the trenches; we don’t want to be on the sidelines, writing checks,” he told peHUB yesterday.
With a little digging, we realized there is already evidence of a syndicate: a few high-profile startups founded by ex-Facebookers, copious cross-investments, at least one inter-Facebook marriage, and some stealth projects that could be the next big thing. For every few employees who now boasts titles like “Baggage Handler at Traveling” or “Chief Mom Officer at Deitch Family,” on LinkedIn, there’s an budding venture capitalist. Meanwhile, former Facebook engineers lying low find their careers pored over on Quora. It’s no wonder some of them have run from the scrutiny and turned off the messaging function on LinkedIn.
“Despite its size, Facebook is still just at the start of the cycle of spawning new startups,” Facebook co-founder Dustin Moskovitz, who left to co-found the task management software startup Asana, wrote in an email to Betabeat well before the company’s S-1 filing. “Asana is an early example, but the Facebook network will produce a lot of compelling companies. Smart people, unique experience, and access to capital is a powerful combination.”
But with the IPO looming, we thought now would be the perfect time to look at where Facebook’s early employees—Zuck’s chosen ones, and those lucky enough to be in the right place at the right time—landed next. -Adrianne Jeffries
Ruchi Sanghvi - Engineer
Then: First female engineer, 2005 to 2010. Launched Newsfeed and developed Platform and Connect.
Now: Ms. Sanghvi left in 2010 and started her own super stealth startup, Cove, which had five employees and did something that "straddled the line between consumer and internet" raised a seed round of financing from investors including early Facebook investor Peter Thiel and Facebook co-founder Dustin Moskovitz. Ms. Sanghvi herself is an investor in Facebook alumni projects Path and Asana. UPDATE: Cove was acquired by Dropbox.
Ms. Sanghvi married another Facebook alumnus, Aditya Agarwal, and their wedding has its own Quora subject. Facebook is "one of the best companies to be working at right now," Ms. Sangvhi told the Huffington Post in September, although she noted it was "difficult to break into the boys' club."
Aditya Agarwal - Director of Engineering
Then: In 2005, Mr. Agarwal left his position as a software engineer at Oracle to work as a tech lead for Zuck as one of his earliest employees. Two years later, he was promoted to Director of Engineering. Mr. Agarwal worked on a range of vital products, including Newsfeed, search, ads, and user commerce, as well as services infrastructure, before departing after five and half years in 2010.
Now: Mr. Agarwal, who was invited to AngelList by his wife Ms. Sanghvi (awww), has been keeping himself busy as an active advisor with investments in startups from former Facebookers like Path and Asana, as well as Y Combinator alum Dropbox, Kima Labs, Ron Conway's SV Angel, and Milo. Last weekend, Groupon acquired Kima for an undisclosed sum. Along with the announcement came the news that, Kima's products (a mobile barcode reading app called Barcode Hero and a mobile payment app called TapBuy) will both be wound down. UPDATE: Cove was acquired by Dropbox.
Just because he's left the building doesn't mean Mr. Argarwal isn't keeping an eye on the product! "Why doesn't the typeahead index FB messages?" he asked his 2,646 Facebook subscribers earlier this month in a publicly visible post on his Timeline. "That's a lot of indexed data to store in-memory for typeahead purposes, no?," friend who works in product design at Facebook replied. "Yea, but FB has a lot of servers, no?" Mr. Agarwal countered. Considering Facebook spent $606 million on servers and the like in 2011, we think that constitutes a nerd burn.
Chris Hughes - Co-founder
Then: Mark Zuckerberg recruited his Harvard roommate, Chris Hughes, to serve as Thefacebook's official spokesman. As Facebook grew, Mr. Hughes fielded an ever-growing number of interview requests, mostly from college papers around the country, and joined the company full time after he graduated in 2006. In early 2007, Mr. Hughes left Facebook and headed to Chicago to work on Barack Obama's digital campaign. "Working with Mark is very challenging," he told David Kirkpatrick, author of "The Facebook Effect."
Now: Since leaving Facebook and the Obama campaign, Mr. Hughes was named entrepreneur-in-residence at General Catalyst Partners. He founded Jumo, a social network for nonprofits and activists, and raised $3.5 million in grant funding from Omidyar Network, the Knight Foundation and the Goldhirsh Foundation, but it was ultimately not a success. As Betabeat wrote: "Waning traffic and disinterested users were making it obvious that the site was not going to catch on, despite multiple redesigns; a tough pill to swallow for the wunderkind whose second act after Facebook, online strategy at the Obama presidential campaign, was another huge success story." Jumo was acquired by GOOD in August 2011 (GOOD co-founder Ben Goldhirsh is a boarding school pal of Mr. Hughes's).
The golden-haired entrepreneur was appointed to the board of the Knight Foundation with the mandate to approach media like a venture capitalist. In December, Mr. Hughes agreed to fund a "stealthy news venture" from MoveOn Executive Director Eli Pariser. Last month, the Huffington Post reported that he was considering buying The New Republic, the lefty news magazine marred by falling circulation and dwindling profits.
Randi Zuckerberg - Director of Marketing
Then: Mark Zuckerberg hired his older sister—an actual Harvard grad—as one of Facebook's first two dozen employees. In an interview with the New York Times, she revealed that Mr. Zuckerberg had to convince her to take his stock offer rather than ask for more cash.
But Ms. Zuckerberg never really left behind her first love: singing under the stage name Randi Jayne. In between coming up with the idea for Facebook Live, the video channel that's featured interviews with Oprah and President Obama, she also got famous for doing bachelorette party lipdub in Las Vegas with Julia Allison and singing at company functions backed by a band of Facebookers. Ms. Zuckerberg seemed like an appropriate foil to her brother's nervous reticence, however. She was promoted to director of marketing, or, as she puts it on LinkedIn "Creative & Buzz Marketing, Politics, and Social Change."
Now: After leaving Facebook last August, Ms. Zuckerberg launched a social media consultancy, R to Z Media. Nonetheless, she told the Times that's she's still interested in everything from having her own talk show to performing on Broadway to philanthropy. As long she took the stock, we're guessing she can pretty much write her own ticket.
Chamath Palihapitiya - VP of User Growth (Mobile), Platform and Monetization
Then: Mr. Palihapitiya’s resume spans from working in venture capital on Sand Hill Road to heading up AOL’s instant messaging division, but his tenure at Facebook was arguably the most significant. Mr. Palihapitiya was a vice president at the startup for four years, from 2007 to 2011, where he oversaw Facebook Platform and launched Facebook’s online advertising channel.
Now: Mr. Palihapitiya now works out of his garage in Palo Alto. The former VP has an extremely amicable relationships with his ex-employer. He runs a $300 million fund, Social+Capital, whose hand-picked investors include Facebook itself and Adam D’Angelo. “He frequently calls on Facebook’s founder, and his friend, Mark Zuckerberg, for instance, to brainstorm investment ideas,” reports Dealbook.
As an angel, Mr. Palihapitiya has a number of investments, some of which have former Facebook employees as investors or advisors. Small Demons, a discovery platform based on metadata from books, counts former Facebookers Julia Popowitz, Tim Kendall and Ali Rosenthal among its investors alongside Mr. Palihapitiya. He also happens to be an avid poker player. Mr. Palihapitiya took the 101st spot in the World Series of Poker in Las Vegas last July with $54,851. "Or in VC terms, 5x his investment," said AllThingsD.
Sean Parker - President
Then:: By now, Mr. Parker's influence in the early days of Facebook is the stuff of Hollywood fantasies. (See Social Network, The). Mr. Parker first introduced himself to Mr. Zuckerberg with an email out of blue after Thefacebook spread around Stanford's campus in a matter of days, playing up his Napster cred and connections to Silicon Valley investors. In "The Facebook Effect," David Kirkpatrick wrote, "[Mr. Parker's] willful disregard for business conventions was almost as thorough as Zuckerberg's ignorance of them."
According to Mr. Kirkpatrick, who also penned his Vanity Fair profile, Mr. Parker was pushed out of the company after a year and eight months for an arrest for cocaine possession in 2005, which Jim Breyer, Accel's board member at Facebook took "very seriously." Mr. Kirkpatrick has also stated that Mr. Parker owns 4 percent Facebook stock, however, he is not directly named in the cap table of the S-1 filing.
Now:: Mr. Parker has since amassed a number of titles, including managing partner at Founders Fund along with early Facebook investor Peter Thiel (whom Mr. Parker once accused of playing "dirty tricks"). Presently, he also serves as founder and chairman of Facebook Causes, board member and investor at Spotify, and founder and chairman of Airtime, a stealth project with fellow Napster alum Shawn Fanning. He sits on the board of directors of Yammer, the business-minded social network, where Facebooker Chamath Palihapitiya invested both personally and through his new fund. He's also an advisor to Dustin Moskovitz's startup, Asana.
Mr. Parker joined Twitter last October, with an apology to his former protegee/employer, tweeting out, "Sorry Zuck, I had to do it eventually." His last update, however, might make up for it. Days before Facebook's S-1, Mr. Parker retweeted portentous words from Fortune.com's Dan Primack: "Facebook mafia is coming."
Chris Putnam - Engineer
Then: Mr. Putnam and a few friends were tinkering around with a worm that made Facebook profiles look like Myspace profiles (LOL). Co-founder Dustin Moskovitz was annoyed, but impressed; he offered the young coder a job in 2006.
Now: Though Mr. Putnam remains at Facebook in the form of an Easter egg (type :putnam: into a Facebook chat window), he left the company in 2010. The 25-year-old has since moved to Austin, Texas, where he is currently laying low.
(Photo: Weirdly Odd)
Tim Kendall - Director of Monetization
Then: Mr. Kendall joined Facebook in June, 2006 as the company's director of monetization shortly after receiving an MBA from Stanford. He literally wrote the blueprint for the company's early monetization strategy, passing it around to the Xooglers who were hired alongside or above him. He recognized that ads on Facebook should be social and was behind the idea of "sponsored stories."
After four-and-a-half years at the company, he left in December 2010. At the time, David Fischer, VP of advertising and global operations, said Mr. Kendall, balanced his "strong intellect, quiet intensity, and complete focus" with "a more lively side that seems to come out after dark and has been displayed over the years at fine Palo Alto establishments like Rudy’s and the Old Pro."
Now: Since leaving Facebook, Mr. Kendall has invested in Zeel Networks, a ZocDoc for alternative healthcare, alongside Facebook investor Matt Ocko, as well as Small Demons, which also counts former Facebookers Julia Popowitz, Ali Rosenthal and Chamath Palihapitiya as investors. Mr. Kendall serves as an advisor to both Zeel and Alpha, an invitation-only network of founders, CEO, and influencers "passionate about the next generation of the Internet." Karl Jacobs, an early Facebook advisor, also advises Alpha.
Mr. Kendall recently told peHUB he's eager to get back into an early stage startup and expects his fellow Facebook alums to do the same, "My suspicion is that most people will ultimately go back to build stuff. I can think of dozens of people who don’t really need to work, who could already be off hanging out angel investing. And they’re still at Facebook.”
Dave Morin - Marketing, Product, Connect and Platform
Then: Mr. Morin was working for Apple in 2006 when he was recruited by Sean Parker and Dustin Moskovitz, according to "The Facebook Effect." (He was not "poached" by Facebook, a spokesperson for Mr. Morin told Betabeat; it was a "mutual decision" between the companies because Mr. Morin was already working with Facebook in his capacity at Apple. He was trying to get the social network integrated into MacOS.)
Now: Mr. Morin left Facebook in 2010 to start Path, the private photosharing startup that counts a number of Facebookers including Sam Lessin, Karl Jacob, Ruchi Sanghvi, Aditya Agarwal and Chris Kelly among its investors. Path has raised $11.2 million to date, according to Crunchbase.
Mr. Morin is invested in several startups himself, including Art.sy, Venmo, Birchbox and Percolate in New York.
Dustin Moskovitz - Cofounder
Then:Mr. Moskovitz cofounded Facebook along with Mark Zuckerberg and Chris Hughes. "I usually mention Andrew [McCollum] and include an * with Eduardo [Saverin]," he quipped on Quora back in 2009. To teach himself to code in the week after Thefacebook launched, Mr. Moskovitz went out and bought PERL for Dummies before Mr. Zuckerberg explained that the site wasn't written in PERL. Mr. Moskovitz's first job was to spearhead expansion to other campuses, which Mr. Zuckerberg called "critical" to the site's success.
As his coding skills grew, Mr. Moskovitz went on to oversee the major architecture of the site as the company's first CTO. He's also credited with Facebook's mobile strategy and development. In "The Facebook Effect," David Kirkpatrick wrote, "Moskovitz is the kind of person every start-up needs—diligent, down-to-earth, versatile, and pragmatic."
Now:Mr. Moskovitz left Facebook in October, 2008 to start Asana, a task management web app to keep teams in sync, along with fellow Facebooker Justin Rosenstein. He initially tried to work on Asana while at Facebook, but eventually set out on his own after Mr. Zuckerberg showed "little interest" in making the social network useful to the workplace. Asana has picked up $10.2 million in funding from a number of Facebook employees and investors, including Peter Thiel, Marc Andreessen, Sean Parker, Owen Van Natta, Aditya Agarwal, Matt Cohler, and more.
In addition to investing in Path, run by fellow Facebook alum Dave Morin, Mr. Moskovitz had invested in Flipboard, which turns Twitter and Facebook into a magazine-style iPad app. Along with Mr. Morin and current Facebook product manager Sam Lessin, Mr. Moskovitz also joined a $1.2 million seed round in Venmo, the mobile payments app that lets you split a bill with your friends. As Facebook's S-1 filing revealed, Mr. Moskovitz owns 7.6 percent, or 134 million, Class B shares. At an analyst-estimated $85 billion valuation, that would earn him $4 billion. Contrary to popular belief, his dog allergies are not the culprit behind Facebook's no pets policy, or so Mr. Moskovitz insists.
Kate Losse - Ghostwriter; Product Manager of Localization and Internationalization; Translator
Then: Ms. Losse joined Facebook in 2005 and worked as a product manager and translator. She also reportedly wrote Mark Zuckerberg's emails for him.
Now: She left Facebook in August 2010. Ms. Losse has deleted her Tumblr, wiped her LinkedIn page clean and even scrubbed her Quora answers, perhaps due to scrutiny from Gawker. She did not respond to a Facebook message for this feature. Her Facebook page has her current title listed as Cultural Capitalist at Kickflip Foundation. She has no public investments.
Owen Van Natta - Chief Operations Officer
Then: Mr. Van Natta worked at Facebook from 2005 to 2008; he served as COO.
Now: Mr. Van Natta headed to executive roles at Myspace and Zynga after Facebook. He stepped down at Zynga in November. He's an investor in Asana, the startup from Facebook co-founder Dustin Moskovitz, as well as in Kima Labs, in which former Facebooker Aditya Agarwal is also an investor and advisor. This past weekend, Groupon acquired Kima Labs for an undisclosed sum.
(Photo: Fabrice Coffrini, AFP/Getty Images)
Katie Geminder - Director, User Experience and Design
Then: Ms. Geminder joined Facebook in 2006 from Apple; she led the product management, design and user experience teams and is listed on Facebook’s Feed patent.
Now: Ms. Geminder actually followed Facebook COO Owen Van Natta to his post-Facebook gig at Myspace, and then to Zynga. She also started an independent design and consulting firm, Geminder, with her husband in 2008.
Jim Migdal - Director of Business Development
Then: Before Mr. Migdal was the director of business development for Facebook, he held top positions at eBay and was an associate consultant at Bain & Company where presidential candidate Mitt Romney had a brief tenure as CEO in the early 1990s. Mr. Migdal left Facebook last year.
Now: Mr. Migdal's LinkedIn indicates Facebook as his last place of employment. His professional title now reads "Baggage Handler at Traveling." According to his Gogobot profile, Mr. Migdal has been to 59 cities in 17 countries. His most recent activity on Quora was upvoting on answer on the best construction techniques for building a treehouse. Someone knows how to spend that Facebook guap.
Net Jacobsson - Director, International Business Development and Mobile
Then: Netanel Jacobsson joined Facebook in 2007 and left just under two years later.
Now: Mr. Jacobsson founded a startup, Playhopper, which launched and released games, but Mr. Jacobsson decided he'd come in too late to the social gaming space and put it on the back burner. He founded a seed stage venture fund, Opportunistic Ventures, and is an advisor to several startups. He recently became CEO for a company called GingerSoftware, Inc.
Evan Priestly - Overengineer
Then: Mr. Priestly worked as an overengineer at Facebook from April, 2007 to April, 2011. On LinkedIn, he lists "sent faxes," as his sole accomplishment during those four years. Thankfully, he goes into a little more detail on the Life at Facebook recruiting page, where he explains how solving a puzzle involving an XKCD comic landed him the job.
Now: Mr. Priestly is presently the lead for Phabricator, an open source suite of web applications he developed at Facebook to help teams communicate about software more effectively. Of course, not every coder has Mr. Priestly's flair for irony, thus he was forced to take to Quora to explain the sarcastic bent in Phabricator's documentation. Mr. Priestly's LinkedIn lists him as the CTO of Phacility, likely the startup version of Phabricator, where fellow Facebook alum Bob Trahan, is listed is the company's CEO.
Benjamin Ling - Director of Platform
Then: Mr. Ling is the rare employee who bounced from Google to Facebook and back to Google. At Facebook, he was director of platform for just under a year.
Now: Mr. Ling went from Facebook to YouTube, and then search at Google. He is a prolific angel investor, but not in Facebook alumni companies. Kara Swisher reported at AllThingsD that the engineer butted heads with Sheryl Sandberg and other higher-ups over internal politics.
(Photo: Benjamin Ling via CNN)
Brandee Barker - Director of Global Communications and Public Policy
Then: Ms. Barker, employee no. 120, started as Facebook's first ever communication executive in 2006 and saw the social network grow from seven million to 500 million users during her four-and-a-half year tenure. As the public voice of Facebook, she navigated endless IPO rumors, government investigations, site outages, and, oh yeah, some minor kerfuffles over privacy issues. At the news of her departure, AllThingsD's Kara Swisher issued a rare "small single tear of sadness" for Ms. Barker's "patented–and very endearing–hand-in-the-face 'no comment' for the powerful social networking site."
Now: Ms. Barker left Facebook to start her own communications consulting business tailored to early stage tech startups. She also sits on the board of the Somaly Mam Foundation and is working on a book called "Giving 2.0."
Jeff Hammerbacher - Manager, Data
Then: Mr. Hammerbacher joined Facebook in 2006 and left in 2008; at the time, VentureBeat called him a "key early employee," a friend of Mark Zuckerberg's from Harvard who was working at Bear Stearns when he was recruited to join Facebook just as the market crashed.
Now: Mr. Hammerbacher has had quite a career in the four years since he left the social network. He went immediately to major Facebook investor Accel Partners as entrepreneur-in-residence. He's now chief scientist at Accel portfolio startup Cloudera. Early Facebook advisor Karl Jacob serves an advisor to Cloudera as well. Mr. Hammerbacher is also an investor in Locu, co-founded by Facebook Fellow Marek Olszewski; Locu counts early Facebookers Andrew McCollum, Matt Ocko and Julia Popowitz as investors.
Yishan Wong - Various Engineering Roles
Then: Mr. Wong is one of the Facebook mafia to come from PayPal; he joined Facebook in late 2005 as a software engineer after more than four years as senior engineering director at the e-payments giant. Then in 2010, the Hawaii native left Facebook.
Now: Mr. Wong is an investor in a few startups, including MatterPort, along with two other Facebookers. He's also invested in Appstores, the startup from Facebook's former partner engineer Ryan Merket; Facebooker Matt Ocko also invested. Facebook alum Josh Elman is an advisor and Facebook investor Alex Fries has also invested.
Mr. Wong's current project: he co-founded the co-working space Sunfire Offices in Mountain View (with a former Googler, not Facebooker).
In the question, "Is there a Facebook mafia?" on Quora, Mr. Wong answered: "No more so than there is a 'Google Mafia.'"
Gilles Mischler - SiteOps Engineer
Then: As Facebook’s first SiteOps Engineer, Business Insider credits Mr. Mischler with building and designing “Facebook's IT infrastructure from the ground up.”
Now: Mr. Mischler left Facebook in May of 2010. Since then, he has worked as an network engineer at both Nokia and Playdom, the social games company acquired by Disney up to $763 million, where former Facebooker Chamath Palihapitiya served on the board of directors. His LinkedIn profile says he lives in the Marseille area of France and is currently self-employed as a network consultant for Mischler & Co. He does not list Facebook as a previous employer on LinkedIn.
Scott Marlette - Engineer and Product Manager
Then: As engineer and product manager from 2005 to the beginning of 2010, Mr. Marlette oversaw the native Facebook Photos application, which helped propel the social network's popularity. He's also credited as an inventor on a patent for its popular photo tagging feature. "Scott almost singlehandely wrote most of the photos application, which itself represents a significant percentage of the site's pageviews and is the leading photo sharing site on the Internet," Karel Baloun writes in his 2006 book, "Inside Facebook."
Now: Mr. Marlette is an advisor to Path, led by former Facebooker Dave Morin and the founder of GoodRx, a website that helps users find access to the prescription drugs they need at the lowest price.
Nick Heyman - Director of Operations
Then: Nick Heyman got into the social media game early. Before he was Facebook’s first director of operations he had management titles at Friendster and Feedster. Working alongside Zuck, Mr. Heyman oversaw the day-to-day of the site as it expanded from three to over 13 million users. He left the company in Jan. 2007.
Now: Mr. Heyman has since worked for Twitter as manager of operations, but was let go at the end of 2010. He has investments in a seed stage startup called Browserling whose product allows users to test how web pages act in various browsers without having to install them.
(Photo: Anna Kipnis | flickr.com)
James Pereira - Engineer
Then: James Pereira was Facebook's 7th employee. He was there from July 2004 to August 2007.
Now: A cryptic photo of a dangerous-looking board game, posted in May, is the latest post on Mr. Pereira’s blog. In 2009, an anonymous Quora user passed along the unconfirmed rumor that Mr. Pereira moved to Portland and enrolled in art school.
Steve King - Director of Media Sales
Then: Before Steve King was one of the first original 15 employees at Facebook, he worked at a small startup acquired by Monster.com. Once at Facebook he directed media sales and can be credited with landing the social utility its first big name advertisers like Panasonic and Microsoft before leaving the company in the summer of 2006.
Now: Mr. King recently left the VP of sales post at Boston-based LocaModa. He is the former CEO of DocuSign and regional sales director at Dotomi. He is now a general partner at Second & Fourth, a firm he founded alongside fellow Facebook alum PJ Solomon. It provides investing, advising and consulting services to pre-seed and early stage companies.
In response to a question on Quora, Mr. King said, “The first 20 employees of Facebook have been given the gift of financial freedom should they choose to exercise their vested stock options in exchange for liquidity.”
Dan Neff - Build and Release Engineer
Then: As employee no. 20, Dan Neff worked as a build/release engineer from May to October 2005.
Now: After Facebook, Mr. Neff worked as a consultant at LinkedIn, a build and release engineer at Zazzle and a release and administrative consultant at Renkoo. He is currently a release and operations lead at Adobe.
Ezra Callahan - Manager of Internal Communications & Product Manager
Then: Mr. Callahan had been roommates with Facebook founding president Sean Parker. He was hired to slowly take over Eduardo Saverin’s CFO responsibilities and eventually became manager of internal communications and product manager.
Now: Mr. Callahan lists himself as "early facebook dude" on LinkedIn and answers questions on Quora fairly frequently on anything from travel time between Los Angeles and San Francisco to the RipStik culture at Facebook. In January he voluntarily confirmed that Facebook's color scheme stems in part from the fact that Mr. Zuckerberg is red/green colorblind.
Matt Cohler - Vice President of Product Management
Then: Mr. Cohler, the first vice president of product management, was one of the first ten employees hired by Facebook’s founders. Before he was at Facebook he was the vice president and general manager at LinkedIn. At the time he was one of the few employees who had a college degree. He left Facebook in the fall of 2008, but has remained an advisor to Mr. Zuckerberg .
Now: Mr. Cohler is a general partner at Benchmark Capital and still has strong ties to his former Facebook brethren. He sits on the board of Asana, run by Facebook cofounder Dustin Moskovitz and former Facebook engineering lead Justin Rosenstein, and on the board of Quora, the Q&A site run by Facebook alumni Adam D'Angelo and Charlie Cheever. He also sits on the boards of Instagram, Edmodo, ResearchGATE, 1stdibs, Domo and CouchSurfing.
(Photo: Eirik Solheim | Wikimedia)
Steve Chen - Senior Software Engineer
Then: Steve Chen was only at Facebook for a few months as a senior software engineer before going on to cofound Youtube.
Then: As chief technology officer, Mr. Chen and fellow cofounders Chad Hurley and Jawed Karim sold Youtube to Google for $1.65 billion. In an SEC filing, it was revealed that Mr. Chen owned shares of Google valued at more than $326 million. Mr. Chen and Mr. Hurley have since started AVOS Systems, where much to the nostalgia market's delight, the company decided to purchase Delicious from Yahoo!, thwarting plans to "sunset" the proto-bookmarking service.
Adam D'Angelo - Chief Technology Officer
Then: Mr. D’Angelo served as Facebook's chief technology office from November, 2006 to June, 2008. A good friend of Mr. Zuckerberg’s in high school, Mr. D’Angelo’s involvement with Facebook began much earlier than that.
Now: Since his departure, Mr. D’Angelo went on to cofound Quora taking fellow Facebooker Charlie Cheever with him.
Charlie Cheever - Software Engineering Manager
Then: As an engineer and manager, Mr. Cheever supervised the rollout of Facebook Connect and the Facebook platform.
Now: He left the company in June 2009 to cofound Quora with another former Facebooker, Adam D’Angelo. Mr. Cheever has investments in Art.sy, Elation EMR, a medical records management tool, and Wikinvest, a finance and investing knowledge sharing site.
Alison Rosenthal - Head of mobile Business Development and the global mobile operator team
Then: Ms. Rosenthal, hired in 2006, was the head of mobile business development and the global mobile operator team until she left the social network in January, 2011.
Now: Ms. Rosenthal is an executive in residence at Greylock Partners and has investments in Small Demons, an interactive “storyverse” site with fellow Facebooker Julia Popowitz, as well investments in Katango, a social algorithms development company, and Copius, a social clothing site. Kleiner Perkins's sFund, which received backing and guidance from Facebook, also invested in Katango. So it might have come as a surprise when Google acquired it the technology, which helps organize your friends into groups, to help power help power Google+ last year.
Taner Halicioglu - Senior Software and Operations Engineer
Then: As employee no. 4, Taner Halicioglu, who came on board as a senior software and operations engineer, was Facebook's first "real" hire outside of the founders. He built out the entire initial hardware infrastructure.
Now: Mr. Halicioglu is now a lead reliability engineer for Blizzard Entertainment—the makers of World of Warcraft.
Karel Baloun - First Senior Engineer
Then: The first senior engineer, Karel Baloun was at Facebook from 2005 to 2006.
Now: Mr Baloun went on to write “Inside Facebook,” his own perspective on the inner-workings of the young social network. Mr. Baloun founded i2we.com and is now both the CTO of LEAP Commerce and the CEO of thruSocial.com.
Justin Rosenstein - Engineering Technical Lead
Then: Mr. Rosenstein served as engineering technical lead from May, 2007 to November, 2008. Before Facebook, he spent three years as a product manager working on Page Creator at Google.
Now: Mr. Rosenstein went on to cofound collaborative software company Asana with Facebook cofounder Dustin Moskovitz. Mr. Rosenstein owns ,863,335 Class B shares4 of Facebook valued at about $30 a share, his stock is worth nearly $146 million.
Andrew McCollum - Cofounder
Then: Mr. McCollum designed Facebook’s first logo, which featured a mystery character, later revealed to be none other than J. Geils Band lead singer Peter Wolf. On Quora, Mr. McCollum said, “not really considering myself a designer, I was initially hesitant, but when he asked ‘who else is going to do it?’, I didn't have a good answer, so I agreed.”
Now: On AngelList, Mr. McCollum lists himself as an entrepreneur-in-residence at both Flybridge Capital and New Enterprise Associates. He is currently an investor in Rentabilities, a service that allows anyone to “rent anything, anywhere,” as well as Locu, a small business-data technology company with fellow Facebook alum Julia Popowitz. He also invests in Curebit, a referral-based ecommerce platform, CustomMade, a service that connects clients to people who can custom build anything, and WePay, an online payment collection service.
Julia Popowitz - Deputy General Counsel
Then: Ms. Popowitz became Facebook's second attorney in June 2006. She was responsible for growing the legal team to over 20 attorneys and staffers. She left the company in April of last year.
Now: Ms. Popowitz is now a major adviser and angel investor in startup tech companies including Locu with Andrew McCollum, Small Demons with fellow Facebooker Ali Rosenthal and Youdazzle, a meeting and file sharing cloud service.
Melanie Deitch - Director of Marketing
Then: As director of Marketing from 2005 to 2007, Ms. Deitch developed the online media sell sheets for ad products, presentations and other sales tools. During her tenure, Ms. Deitch once compared banning student athletes from Facebook to "banning rock 'n' roll in the 50s."
Now: Ms. Deitch's LinkedIn lists her current title as CMO... chief mom officer. She lives with her family, including three sons in Mill Valley, California.
(Photo: Esther Dyson | flickr.com)
Jonathan Heiliger - Vice President of Technical Operations
Then: Mr. Heiliger was the VP of technical operations from 2007 through 2011, where he was in charge of global infrastructure, site architecture and IT.
Now: Mr. Heiliger is an angel investor in several startups including Viki, an international video streaming service that translates content into over 100 languages.
Josh Elman Platform - Program Manager
Then: Mr. Elman already held key positions at LinkedIn and Zazzle before becoming a key program manager at Facebook in 2008. He left Facebook in 2009.
Now: After Facebook Mr. Elman took a job as a product manager at Twitter. He is now an angel investor in Treehouse, a web design education company, along with former Facebooker Chamath Palihapitiya. He's also an investor in BranchOut, the self-proclaimed "largest professional network on Facebook," whose investors include former Facebookers Dave Morin, Benjamin Ling and Matt Ocko. He has been a principal at Greylock Partners since last September along with former Facebooker Ali Rosenthal.
(Photo: Inside Facebook)
Darian Shirazi - Software Engineer
Then: Karel Baloun's book, "Inside Facebook," mentions an infusion of "brilliant summer interns," including Darian Shirazi, Tiankai "Tank" Liu, and Charles "La" La, who "contributed hundreds of code commits before even getting into college." Indeed, in 2007 Mr. Shirazi told BusinessWeek he met Mr. Zuckerberg a week before his high school graduation and was promptly offered a job. Mr. Shirazi had already been accepted to Berkeley and decided to pursue both paths, simultaneously. For a year-and-a-half, Mr. Shirazi worked as a software engineer while Facebook ballooned from 15 employees up to 250 employees.
Now: In December, 2006, Mr. Shirazi dropped out of Berkeley to cofound a company called Redux that raised $1.65 million in venture capital the following year. Redux offered an app called FlickIM that let users aggregate chat accounts, watch TV, and listen to music within the same window. The company still appears to be in business, although Mr. Shirazi is not listed on its Crunchbase page and does not cite the company in his LinkedIn profile, where his current title is founder and CEO of Fwix, a startup that "organizes the Internet by location." On AngelList, Mr. Shirazi also lists himself as founder in 50cubes.
In his Twitter bio, Mr. Shirazi weighs in decisively on the war of Mexican hot sauces, writing, "cholua [sic] is better than tapatio." Betabeat concurs.
Eduardo Saverin - Cofounder and Chief Financial Officer
Then: Mr. Saverin is a Facebook cofounder and was the social networks first CFO. After a period of disagreement between himself and Mr. Zuckerberg on what direction to take the social network in, Mr. Saverin's involvement was significantly reduced. The conflict between the two cofounders reached its apex when Mr. Saverin's shares were reduced from over 34 percent to less than half a percent. He famously sued Mark Zuckerberg in suit that was settled out of court. As part of the agreement Mr. Saverin kept his cofounder title despite breaking from the company. In "The Social Network" Mr. Saverin was played by actor Andrew Garfield.
Now: Since his split from the company, Mr. Saverin has been keen to stay out of the spotlight. He is the lead investor of Qwiki, a search engine that returns a multimedia presentation, which actually has more investors associated with Google than with Facebook (sticking it to the Zuck, Eduardo?). He also lead the series A round of financing for Jumio, an online and mobile payment collection system that can scan credit cards via webcam. He is also an investor in ShopSavvy, the first mobile shopping app that incorporates a barcode scanner. Mr. Saverin has sold $250 million worth of Facebook stock andreportedly retains five percent ownership of Facebook valued at roughly $2.8 billion. He lives in Singapore.
Tricia Black - VP Advertising Sales
Then:In 2004, Eduardo Saverin called up a firm called Y2M that sold ads for college newspaper sites, where Ms. Black was serving as their VP of national sales. The meeting had to be delayed a couple times because Mr. Zuckerberg and Mr. Saverin had exams and papers due. Ms. Black was initially skeptical of Thefacebook's stunning traffic growth, reportedly telling Mr. Zuckerberg, "You must be tracking it wrong." He wasn't.
Through Y2M, she convinced Mastercard to run a test campaign. In one day, they got twice as many students to fill out credit card applications as they had expected for an entire week.
Ms. Black had been "begging" Mr. Saverin to join Facebook since mid-2004, but insisted they cancel a planned national beer pong competition first. She eventually joined as the company's first VP of advertising sales in 2005, bringing in marquee advertisers like Apple and Victoria's Secret. Before that, revenue came from "flyers," purchased by students or local businesses who wanted to target a specific college campus. On Quora, Y2M Ceo John Fees wrote, "My records show that Y2M sold more than 2 million in ads in the first 18 months of it's deal with FB so an equity kicker would have been The smart thing. Live and learn [sic]."
Now: Ms. Black left Facebook in June, 2006, and has been working as a self-employed sales and business development consultant in the Boston area, according to her LinkedIn profile.
Ryan Merket - Developer Relations Manager
Then: Before Mr. Merket was Facebook's developer relations manager, he was at CBS Interactive doing social media design. He left the social network in 2010.
Now: Mr Merket is the cofounder and CEO of Appstores.com, a platform that allows websites to integrate custom app stores into their site that grew out of Appbistro, a Facebook app marketplace. According to his Twitter, "epic cocktails and friends" make him happy.
Where are Facebook's early employees now?