As we first reported way back in December, Facebook Chief Privacy Officer Chris Kelly today officially launched his campaign for the office of Attorney General of California. You can find his campaign homepage here and, of course, he’s also vying for fans on his Facebook page (complete with custom Facebook application).
At this point Kelly has announced his intention to form an “exploratory committee”, and plans to remain at Facebook for the immediate future. Should he continue in the race (which there doesn’t seem to be much doubt of) he would take a leave of absence, when he’d likely be replaced with Facebook’s new Public Policy Director Timothy D. Sparapani, who Facebook hired last month in anticipation of Kelly’s departure.
During his time at Facebook, Kelly has dealt with a variety of privacy issues tied to the social network, including negotiations with Attorneys General troughout the US, the Beacon fiasco, constant phishing and spam attacks, and the community’s revolt over Facebook’s new Terms of Service. While it’s widely considered to be the ‘safer’ of the major social networks, Facebook hasn’t always come out of these unscathed, so it will be interesting to see how voters perceive Kelly’s Facebook experience.
Before joining Facebook four years ago, Kelly had previously clerked for federal Judge Barry Moskowitz of the United States District Court in San Diego, was a practicing lawyer, and later served as a policy advisor during the Clinton administration (you can read his full bio here).