Seeking to rebound from a tough initial public offering, Facebook scored PR points on June 25 by naming COO Sheryl Sandberg as its first woman member of its board of directors.

Accolades were heaped on the social networker from groups like WomenCorporateDirectors, an organization that reps more than 1,400 female directors across the globe. Co-founder Susan Stautberg said the addition of Sandberg to the eight-member board gives Facebook “diversity of thought and gender” and is a move that will serve as a role model for “aspiring women leaders at Facebook and other companies around the globe.

The positive vibe is great, but what took Facebook so long to elevate the much-accomplished Sandberg, who joined the company from Google in 2008?

At Facebook, Sandberg is in charge of sales, marketing, business development, legal, human resources, public policy and communications. As VP-global online sales and operations at Google, Sandberg built and managed its online sales channels for advertising and publishing and operations for consumer products worldwide.

Sandberg, a director at Woman for Woman International, is at the middle of the current national debate over women empowerment. She sits on the board of V-Day, which fights violence against women and girls. On the corporate front, Sandberg joined Starbucks board in 2009, but decided not to seek re-election this year. She has served on the Walt Disney board since 2010.

What took Facebook so long to acknowledge Sandberg, whom CEO Mark Zuckerberg called his “partner” and credited for being “central to our growth and success over the years.”

Facebook is lucky to be able to hold on to CEO-material Sandberg.

(Photo: World Economic Forum)