Mark Zuckerberg ties the knot
FACEBOOK co-founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg wed longtime girlfriend Priscilla Chan on Saturday, announcing the nuptials through a status update on the social networking site.
The 28-year-old billionaire’s wedding took place a day after Facebook’s initial public offering on the Nasdaq stock exchange on Friday.
On Monday, Zuckerberg turned 28 and Chan graduated from the University of California, San Francisco School of Medicine, where she’d studied pediatrics.
Then on Friday, Zuckerberg took his blue-and-white web behemoth public in one of the most anticipated stock offerings in Wall Street history.
The seemingly well-coordinated timing was largely a coincidence, a guest at the wedding said.
The wedding had been planned for months and the couple was waiting for Chan to finish medical school, but the date of the IPO was a “moving target” not known when the wedding was set.
Attendees at the wedding included Facebook’s chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg. They were told after they arrived that they were not mere party guests but wedding guests.
“Everybody was shocked,” the guest said.
The person would not discuss the names of others who attended to protect their privacy.
Zuckerberg met Chan at Harvard, where he founded Facebook in a dorm room in 2004, and have been together for more than nine years.
Chan’s own Facebook page, which now lists her as married to the founder, said she is a native of Braintree, Massachusetts, and attended high school in nearby Quincy.
She graduated Harvard in 2007, then taught science to fourth and fifth graders at the Harker School in San Jose for two years before starting medical school, according to her profile.
Her page also says she “loves cooking and soft things.” When they met first, all those years ago, Priscilla Chan, a Chinese-American from the Boston suburbs, didn’t warm up to the man who would become a social media icon barely years later. She told The New Yorker that at first she thought Zuckerberg was “this nerdy guy who was just a little bit out there.” More than 280,000 people “liked” Zuckerberg’s status change, which was accompanied by a photo of the smiling couple in wedding attire in a small, verdant outdoor setting with a string of lights behind them.
The famously casual Zuckerberg wore a dark blue suit and tie, a departure from his trademark “hoodie,” while Chan has on a sleeveless white dress with lace overlay.
The pair wed in an intimate backyard ceremony in Palo Alto, California, according to People magazine.
The couple had planned the exchange of vows for four months, but surprised their guests, who thought they were going to celebrate Chan’s recent graduation from medical school, the magazine reported.
Zuckerberg’s sister, Arielle Zuckerberg, posted, “Now I’m the only unmarried Zuckerberg...” on her Facebook page. She is listed by Chan as a family member on the site.
Zuckerberg designed a simple ruby wedding ring for Chan himself, People reported. Guests dined on food from the couple’s favourite restaurants, and nibbled on mouseshaped chocolates that the pair ate on their first date nine years ago.
Tim Carvell, lead writer for The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, reacted to the news on Twitter, writing: “Congratulations, Mark Zuckerberg! As a gift, I got you the names of all my friends, a list of my favourite movies, and some photos of me!” Facebook’s emergence as a cultural phenomenon was depicted in the fictionalised 2010 film The Social Network.
Zuckerberg, Time magazine’s Person of the Year in 2010, started Facebook in his Harvard University dorm room eight years ago, before dropping out of the Ivy League school.
Neither Zuckerberg nor Chan commented further about their marriage on their Facebook pages, and Facebook representatives did not immediately respond to e-mailed requests for comment on the wedding.
The couple adopted a Hungarian sheepdog named Beast a year ago, and live together in Palo Alto.