Former Obama press secretary Jay Carney leaves Amazon for Airbnb
July 23 (UPI) — Jay Carney, the former White House press secretary under President Barack Obama, will be leaving Amazon for Airbnb, the vacation rental company announced Friday.
Carney served as White House press secretary from 2011 to 2014 after two decades as a political reporter at Time Magazine. He joined Amazon as senior vice president of global corporate affairs in 2015, serving as the company’s chief spokesperson.
He will begin serving as Airbnb’s global head of policy and communications from September, reporting to co-founder and chief executive Brian Chesky. Carney will be based in Washington, D.C.
“Jay has worked at the highest levels of government and technology, as a strategic advisor to the president, and at one of the largest technology companies in the world,” Chesky said in a statement.
“When you combine that with his two decades in the field as a journalist, he brings a deep understanding of the needs of multiple stakeholders. Jay is also a passionate advocate for community engagement and is committed to making Airbnb a force for good.”
Carney’s exit from Amazon comes as the shopping giant faces challenges including union drives and inflation, as well as resignations among the company’s upper echelons.
Dave Clark, the company’s head of retail, resigned in June after spending 23 years with the company after joining Amazon in 1999. His resignation was followed by senior vice president of Global Customer Satisfaction Alicia Boler-Davis and David Bozeman, Vice President of Amazon Transportation Services. .
Carney told Amazon staff in a memo obtained by CNBC that the teams he led were in “very good hands.”
“Together, you will all continue to make Amazon a company that does great, positive things for its customers, employees, and communities around the world,” Carney wrote in the memo.
Andy Jassy, who succeeded Jeff Bezos as Amazon CEO last year, said in another memo obtained by the outlet that Amazon would “immediately begin a search” for Carney’s replacement.