Former FCC Chairman Kevin Martin Is Facebook’s New Interim Head of Policy

Erin Egan will focus on expanded duties as chief privacy officer

Martin joined Facebook in May 2015. Getty Images
Headshot of David Cohen

Facebook is turning to a Republican Party-friendly face to help boost its lobbying efforts during these times of tumult for the company.

Former Federal Communications Commission chairman Kevin Martin, who joined Facebook in May 2015 as vice president of mobile and global access policy, will serve as interim head of policy, reporting to vp of global public policy Joel Kaplan.

Martin worked with Kaplan on the 2000 Bush-Cheney campaign before spending eight years (2001-2009) at the FCC during the Bush administration, serving as chairman from March 2005 through January 2009, when Barack Obama became president.

Erin Egan had been serving as both chief privacy officer and vp overseeing U.S. public policy since May 2015, and she will now focus on what the social network called “expanded duties” as CPO.

Facebook said those expanded duties include working with product teams to ensure that privacy controls pass muster when new products are developed as well as increasing engagement with regulators and advocates worldwide on privacy-related issues. The role of the CPO has gained some steam in recent months, as companies grapple with what seem like daily data breaches, hacks and other privacy scandals.

“We are committed to rebuilding people’s trust in how we handle their information, and Erin is the best person to partner with our product teams on that task,” Facebook vp of communications and public policy Elliot Schrage said. David Cohen is editor of Adweek's Social Pro Daily.