Donald E. Graham, the chief executive and chairman of The Washington Post company, was an early confidant of Facebook founder and chief executive Mark Zuckerberg. Graham even passed on having his company invest in Facebook in the early days, encouraging Zuckerberg to take funding from Accel Partners instead (which Zuckerberg did).

But the relationship has continued. Today, Facebook is announcing that Graham has joined the company’s board of directors. Here’s Zuckerberg’s statement, from Facebook’s press release:

Don Graham understands how to build and manage an organization for the long term. He has made The Washington Post Company one of the most valued and respected education and media companies while making society more open and understanding. What I most admire about Don is his commitment to build around this purpose –- and not just a business. His decision to join our board means that Facebook will benefit from this insight and experience.

The Facebook board also includes Zuckerberg, entrepreneur Marc Andreessen, investor Jim Breyer of Accel Partners, and investor Peter Thiel of Founders Fund and Clarium Capital.

[Graham photo via Columbia University]