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Chris Hughes (born November 26, 1983) is an American
entrepreneur Entrepreneurship is the creation or extraction of value. With this definition, entrepreneurship is viewed as change, generally entailing risk beyond what is normally encountered in starting a business, which may include other values than simply ...

entrepreneur
who co-founded and served as spokesman for the online social directory and networking site
Facebook Facebook (stylized as ) is an American online social media and social networking service based in Menlo Park, California, and a flagship service of the namesake company Facebook, Inc. It was founded by Mark Zuckerberg, along with fellow Harvard ...

Facebook
, with
Harvard Harvard University is a private Ivy League The Ivy League (also known as The Ancient Eight) is an American collegiate athletic conference comprising eight private research universities in the Northeastern United States. The term '' ...

Harvard
roommates
Mark Zuckerberg Mark Elliot Zuckerberg (; born ) is an American media magnate, internet entrepreneur, and Philanthropy, philanthropist. He is known for co-founding Meta Platforms, Meta Platforms, Inc. (formerly named Facebook, Inc.) and serves as its chairma ...
,
Dustin Moskovitz Dustin Aaron Moskovitz (; born May 22, 1984) is an American Internet entrepreneur who co-founded Facebook Facebook (stylized as ) is an American online social media and social networking service based in Menlo Park, California, and a flagship ...
,
Eduardo Saverin Eduardo Luiz Saverin (; ; born March 19, 1982) is a Brazilian entrepreneur and angel investor. Saverin is one of the co-founders of Facebook Facebook (stylized as ) is an American online social media and social networking service based in Me ...
, and
Andrew McCollum Andrew McCollum (born 4 September 1983) is an American angel investor and businessman. McCollum is a co-founder of Facebook Facebook (stylized as ) is an American online social media and social networking service based in Menlo Park, Califo ...
. He was the publisher and editor-in-chief of ''
The New Republic ''The New Republic'' is an American magazine of commentary on politics, contemporary culture, and the arts. Founded in 1914 by several leaders of the progressive movement, it attempted to find a balance between a humanitarian progressivism and ...
'' from 2012 to 2016. , Hughes is a co-chair of the Economic Security Project. In 2018, Hughes published ''Fair Shot: Rethinking Inequality and How We Earn''. In May 2019, he published an
op-ed An op-ed, short for "opposite the editorial page" or as a backronym A backronym, or bacronym, is an acronym An acronym is a word or name formed from the initial components of a longer name or phrase, usually using individual initial letters, ...
in the ''
New York Times ''The New York Times'' (''NYT'' or ''NY Times'') is an American daily newspaper based in New York City with a worldwide readership. Founded in 1851, the ''Times'' has since won List of Pulitzer Prizes awarded to The New York Times, 130 Pulit ...

New York Times
'', calling for the "Break Up of Facebook" and government regulation of content on it, and in June of the same year, he criticized the Facebook decision to launch
Libra The Libra Party or ''Equal List'' ( sq, Lista e Barabartë) is a list of political parties in Albania, political party in Albania. It was founded in 2016. History The party was founded by Ben Blushi, a prominent politician/writer, and Mimoza H ...
, saying that the cryptocurrency "would shift power into the wrong hands if, at least, the coin be modestly successful".


Early life and education

Hughes grew up in
Hickory, North Carolina Hickory is a city located primarily in Catawba County, with formal boundaries extending into Burke and Caldwell counties. The city lies in the U.S. state In the United States The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the ...
, as the only child of Arlen "Ray" Hughes, an industrial paper salesman, and Brenda Hughes, a mathematics teacher. He was raised as an evangelical
Lutheran Lutheranism is one of the largest branches of Protestantism Protestantism is a form of Christianity Christianity is an Abrahamic religions, Abrahamic Monotheism, monotheistic religion based on the Life of Jesus in the New Testament, life ...
. He graduated from
Phillips Academy ("Not for Self") la, Finis Origine Pendet ("The End Depends Upon the Beginning") , address = 180 Main Street , city = Andover , state = Massachusetts Massachusetts (, ), officially ...
in
Andover, Massachusetts Andover is a New England town, town in Essex County, Massachusetts, United States. It was settled in 1642 and incorporated in 1646."Andover" in ''Encyclopedia Britannica, The New Encyclopædia Britannica''. Chicago: Encyclopædia Britannica Inc. ...
before earning a Bachelor of Arts in History and English literature from
Harvard College Harvard College is the undergraduate education, undergraduate college of Harvard University, an Ivy League research university in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Founded in 1636, Harvard College is the original school of Harvard University, the oldest i ...
. In February 2020, it was reported that Hughes was in the process of earning his Master of Arts in Economics from
The New School for Social Research The New School for Social Research (NSSR) is an educational institution that is part of The New School in New York City New York City (NYC), often simply called New York, is the List of United States cities by population, most populous city ...
in New York City.


Career


Facebook

During his freshman year at Harvard in 2002, Hughes met and was recruited by
Mark Zuckerberg Mark Elliot Zuckerberg (; born ) is an American media magnate, internet entrepreneur, and Philanthropy, philanthropist. He is known for co-founding Meta Platforms, Meta Platforms, Inc. (formerly named Facebook, Inc.) and serves as its chairma ...
, who at the time was still working in the early stages of Facebook. For the next two years, Hughes was unofficially responsible for beta testing and product suggestions. When the group had the idea to open Facebook to other schools, Hughes argued that schools should have their own networks to maintain the intimacy feel. He was also a key driver in developing many of Facebook's popular features, which led to the opening of Facebook to the outside world. As a result, Hughes became the
de facto ''De facto'' ( ; , "in fact") describes practices that exist in reality, even though they are not officially recognized by laws. It is commonly used to refer to what happens in practice, in contrast with '' de jure'' ("by law"), which refers to th ...
Facebook spokesman. In 2004, Hughes, Zuckerberg and Moskovitz traveled to
Palo Alto, California Palo Alto () is a charter city located in the northwestern corner of Santa Clara County, California Santa Clara County, officially the County of Santa Clara, is California's List of counties in California, 6th most populous county, with a popu ...

Palo Alto, California
during their summer break. After the summer break, while Zuckerberg and Moskovitz decided to remain in Palo Alto, Hughes decided to return to Harvard to continue his studies. In 2006, he graduated ''
magna cum laude Latin honors are Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. Through the power of the Rom ...
'' from
Harvard University Harvard University is a private Private or privates may refer to: Music * "In Private "In Private" was the third single in a row to be a charting success for United Kingdom, British singer Dusty Springfield, after an absence of nearly tw ...

Harvard University
with a
Bachelor of Arts Bachelor of Arts (BA or AB; from the Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. Throug ...
in history and literature. He then relocated to Palo Alto to rejoin Zuckerberg and Moskovitz and became involved in Facebook again. In 2019, he wrote an op-ed in ''The New York Times'' calling for the break up of Facebook.


After Facebook

In 2007, Hughes left Facebook to volunteer for
Barack Obama Barack Hussein Obama II ( ; born August 4, 1961) is an American politician and attorney who served as the 44th president of the United States The president of the United States (POTUS) is the head of state and head of government of ...

Barack Obama
's 2008 presidential campaign. In March 2009, Hughes was named
Entrepreneur in Residence An Entrepreneur in residence, or Executive in residence (EIR), is a position most often held by successful entrepreneurs Entrepreneurship is the creation or extraction of value. With this definition, entrepreneurship is viewed as change, general ...
at
General Catalyst General Catalyst is an American venture capital firm focused on early stage and growth investments. The firm was founded in 2000 in Cambridge, Massachusetts Cambridge ( ) is a city in Middlesex County, Massachusetts, Middlesex County, Massachu ...
, a
Cambridge, Massachusetts Cambridge ( ) is a city in Middlesex County, Massachusetts, Middlesex County, Massachusetts, and part of the Greater Boston, Boston metropolitan area as a major suburb of Boston. As of the 2020 United States Census, the city's population was 118, ...
, venture-capital firm. He was the executive director of
Jumo Jumo was a social network service and website launched on November 30, 2010, to index charities so that people can find and evaluate them. Jumo was founded by Facebook Facebook (stylized as ) is an American online social media and social netw ...
, a non-profit social network organization which he founded in 2010, which "aims to help people find ways to help the world". In July 2010,
UNAIDS The Joint United Nations Programme on HIV and AIDS (UNAIDS) (French: ''Programme commun des Nations Unies sur le VIH/sida'', ONUSIDA) is the main advocate for accelerated, comprehensive and coordinated global action on the HIV/AIDS pandemic. T ...

UNAIDS
(Joint United Nations Programme on
HIV/AIDS Human immunodeficiency virus infection and acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (HIV/AIDS) is a spectrum of conditions caused by infection An infection is the invasion of an organism's body Tissue (biology), tissues by Pathogen, disease-ca ...
) appointed him to a 17-member "High Level Commission" of renowned politicians, business leaders, human rights activists, and scientists tasked with spearheading a "social and political action campaign over the coming year aimed at galvanizing support for effective HIV prevention programmes."


''The New Republic''

In March 2012, Hughes purchased a majority stake in ''
The New Republic ''The New Republic'' is an American magazine of commentary on politics, contemporary culture, and the arts. Founded in 1914 by several leaders of the progressive movement, it attempted to find a balance between a humanitarian progressivism and ...
'' magazine. He became the publisher and executive chairman, and also served as editor-in-chief of the magazine. In December 2014, shortly after the magazine's centennial celebration, editor
Franklin Foer Franklin Foer (; born July 20, 1974) is a staff writer at '' The Atlantic'' and former editor of ''The New Republic ''The New Republic'' is an American magazine of commentary on politics, contemporary culture, and the arts. Founded in 1914 by se ...
and literary editor
Leon Wieseltier Leon Wieseltier (; born June 14, 1952) is an American critic A critic is a professional who communicates an assessment and an opinion of various forms of creative works such as Art criticism, art, Literary criticism, literature, Music journa ...
were "driven out" and dozens of other staff and contributing editors resigned after a new chief executive, Guy Vidra, a former
Yahoo! Yahoo! (, styled as yahoo''!'') is an American web services provider. It is headquartered in Sunnyvale, California and owned by Verizon Media, which acquired it in 2017 for $4.48 billion. It currently provides a web portal, search engine ...
employee, described the new direction of the magazine as a "vertically integrated digital media company." The magazine was forced to cancel its upcoming issue due to the staff departures. The magazine was not profitable during Hughes' tenure. On January 11, 2016, Hughes put ''The New Republic'' up for sale, saying he had "underestimated the difficulty of transitioning an old and traditional institution into a digital media company in today's quickly evolving climate." Hughes' ownership of ''The New Republic'' was described by ''
The New York Times ''The New York Times'' (''NYT'' or ''NY Times'') is an American daily newspaper based in New York City with a worldwide readership. Founded in 1851, the ''Times'' has since won List of Pulitzer Prizes awarded to The New York Times, 130 Pulit ...

The New York Times
'' as a "vanity project." He sold the magazine on February 26, 2016, to Oregon publisher
Win McCormack Win McCormack is an United States, American publisher and editor from Oregon. He is editor-in-chief of ''Tin House'' magazine and Tin House Books, the former publisher of ''Oregon Magazine'', founder and treasurer of MediAmerica, Inc., and a co-fou ...
.


Personal life

Hughes is openly gay and married to
Sean Eldridge Sean Eldridge (born July 31, 1986) is a Canadian-born American political activist from New York. Eldridge is the founder and president of Stand Up America, a progressive advocacy community. He previously served as political director of Freedom to ...

Sean Eldridge
, political director of
Freedom to Marry Freedom to Marry was the national bipartisan organization dedicated to winning marriage for same-sex couples in the United States The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States (U.S. or US), or America, is a countr ...
. Hughes and Eldridge announced their engagement in January 2011 at a reception in support of Freedom to Marry. They married on June 30, 2012. The couple bought a $2 million residence in
New York's 19th congressional district New York's 19th congressional district is located in New York's Catskills and mid-Hudson Valley The Hudson Valley (also known as the Hudson River Valley) comprises the valley of the Hudson River The Hudson River is a river A riv ...
with the reported purpose of permitting Eldridge to run for the congressional seat there. Eldridge lost his 2014 bid for a congressional seat by 28 points. Hughes endorsed Democratic candidate
Hillary Clinton Hillary Diane Rodham Clinton ( Rodham; born October 26, 1947) is an American politician, diplomat, lawyer, writer, and public speaker who served as the 67th United States secretary of state The United States secretary of state implements ...

Hillary Clinton
in the run-up for the 2016 U.S. presidential election.


In popular culture

Hughes was portrayed by actor Patrick Mapel in the 2010 film ''
The Social Network ''The Social Network'' is a 2010 American biographical drama film directed by David Fincher David Andrew Leo Fincher (born August 28, 1962) is an American film director. Known for his psychological thrillers, his films have received 40 n ...

The Social Network
''.


References


Further reading

* * * an
photo gallery
* * *


External links


Profile
at
Facebook Facebook (stylized as ) is an American online social media and social networking service based in Menlo Park, California, and a flagship service of the namesake company Facebook, Inc. It was founded by Mark Zuckerberg, along with fellow Harvard ...

Facebook

Founder and Executive Director
profile at
Jumo Jumo was a social network service and website launched on November 30, 2010, to index charities so that people can find and evaluate them. Jumo was founded by Facebook Facebook (stylized as ) is an American online social media and social netw ...

Entrepreneur in Residence
at
General Catalyst Partners General Catalyst is an American venture capital firm focused on early stage and growth capital, growth investments. The firm was founded in 2000 in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and also has offices in San Francisco, Palo Alto, California, Palo Alto an ...
* {{DEFAULTSORT:Hughes, Chris 1983 births 21st-century American businesspeople American company founders American computer businesspeople American Internet celebrities Facebook employees Harvard College alumni LGBT businesspeople from the United States LGBT people from New York (state) LGBT people from North Carolina HIV/AIDS activists
Living people Related categories * :Year of birth missing (living people) / :Year of birth unknown * :Date of birth missing (living people) / :Date of birth unknown * :Place of birth missing (living people) / :Place of birth unknown * :Year of death mi ...
Phillips Academy alumni People from Garrison, New York People from Hickory, North Carolina 21st-century LGBT people