|Born||New York City, New York|
|Occupation||Vice President of Communications at Facebook|
Marooney grew up in New York City on the Upper West Side. She is the daughter of James Marooney and Liane Plane and has one sister, Lisa. A 1985 graduate of the all-girls Brearley School in Manhattan, she later attended and graduated from Cornell University with a B.S. in labor relations.
In 1997, Marooney and Margit Wennmachers co-founded Outcast Communications, a San Francisco public relations firm, specializing in technology companies. Clients included Facebook, Yahoo!, Andreessen Horowitz, Netflix, Amazon (company). Salesforce.com, and EMC. Her former partner attributed to Marooney the popularization of SalesForce's "end of software" branding and story. Marooney remained as co-president of Outcast after it was acquired in 2005 by Next Fifteen Communications, Europe's largest publicly traded PR company. She became the sole president following her partner's departure.
In March 2011, Marooney was diagnosed with breast cancer at the same time she was offered a job at Facebook heading up tech public relations. The job was leading outreach for Facebook to the tech community. While she first assumed she would have to turn down the promotion to deal with health issues, after consulting with Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and COO Sheryl Sandberg, she decided to accept. She told her new staff at Facebook that she had the disease and would need their help more because of the side effects of her treatment. She credits being open with fostering a more cohesive, collaborative staff, and shifting her focus from her own success to that of the team. She also says that the communications team is more willing to discuss and share "lessons learned" from bad outcomes in group settings. In an interview, Sheryl Sandberg described the outcome of Marooney's decision: "By sharing this huge challenge that she was going through, her team has actually become stronger. They’ve pulled together to help her, and they’ve started sharing more of their own personal and professional challenges."
Marooney assumed day-to-day control of the entire Facebook communications team in March 2016. She also began to oversee all communications for Facebook-owned Instagram, WhatsApp, and Oculus VR.
Philosophy and impact
Marooney's essay "The Best PR Advice You've Never Heard" appeared in Fast Company (magazine) as a "Best Business Lesson of 2014." Marooney developed the "RIBS" test to develop a compelling PR message (will a story "stick to your ribs"), which stands for "Relevant, Inevitable, Believable, Simple." A Salesforce executive who worked with Marooney said RIBS "taught a generation of communicators how to ask the right questions, create a messaging framework, and build a case for why anyone should care." She also advised that start-ups not launch until they know their "second message" - what comes next after launch publicity is over. The article also includes Marooney's advice on developing a "Brand Lens" and "Seven Deadly Sins" and "Seven Virtuous Habits" of communications.
In a February 2017 article in Vogue (magazine), Marooney was described as one of the "top women in tech." She said: "I wish I could tell my younger self: ‘Chill out; it’s going to be okay if you focus on what you are good at, what you like doing, and if you are providing value to the place you are right now.’ ” Marooney also offered career advice to women: "Have a seat at the table and own the space you’re in, and be brave enough to say what you really think. It helps how people perceive you and your career advancement."
Marooney is married and a mother of one son. She relocated from New York to the San Francisco-area of California for her career. She has said she might one day return to New York City to raise a family.
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