Joe Lockhart joins Facebook team

Facebook has hired former White House press secretary Joe Lockhart to serve as vice president of global communications, the company announced late Tuesday.

"Joe's arrival brings new skills and greater depth to our incredibly busy team," said Elliot Schrage, vice president of global communications, marketing and public policy at Facebook.

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"His experience building and running a press office at the White House gives him particular appreciation for the demands of a global, 24-hour news cycle and the challenges of responding effectively to intense scrutiny"

Lockhart is currently the founding partner and managing director of the Glover Park Group, a Washington-based communications firm. He will join Facebook July 15 and start off splitting time between D.C. and California before eventually moving to the West Coast full-time.

He is the latest high-profile Washington insider to join the social networking giant, which has drawn increasing scrutiny from lawmakers ahead of the upcoming debate on consumer privacy legislation. He will manage the corporate, policy and international communications teams.

Lockhart served as chief spokesman and senior adviser to President Bill Clinton from 1998 to 2000. A veteran of several political campaigns, he served as senior adviser to Sen. John Kerry’s (D-Mass.) 2004 presidential bid and worked as a press secretary for the 1996 Clinton-Gore campaign, the 1988 Dukakis-Bentsen campaign, and the 1984 Mondale-Ferraro campaign.

He has also worked as an assignment editor at ABC News, a deputy assignment manager for CNN in Washington and a foreign producer for SKY Television News. He received a B.A. from Georgetown University.

Lockhart's hiring comes a few months after speculation former Obama spokesperson Robert Gibbs was in talks to join the company. There were reports in March that Gibbs was in discussions to join Facebook's staff but nothing came to fruition.