Meet Evernote’s Next CEO, Chris O’Neill

Posted by Phil Libin on 20 Jul 2015

Posted by Phil Libin on 20 Jul 2015

Evernote CEO, Chris O'Neill (left) and Evernote Co-founder and Executive Chairman, Phil Libin.
Evernote CEO Chris O’Neill (left) and Evernote Co-founder and Executive Chairman Phil Libin.

A new chapter at Evernote starts next week: Chris O’Neill will be our next CEO. Wow. That’s a big sentence for me to write. I have to stop for a minute.

Eight years ago, a bunch of us came together in California to build something important. We saw an opportunity to change what people expected from productivity tools. Smart investors thought we were crazy. They were right, but so were we. Few teams ever get a chance to see their dreams become critically valuable to others, to play a tangible part in shaping an industry, and to measurably bend the world around them. We’ve done it, but there’s still a lot of bending left to do.

Today, Evernote has 150 million users worldwide. Each of these individuals is raising their hand, looking for a different way to get work done. The need is massive. Evernote’s potential is enormous. We’ve proven the potential. Now we have to fulfill it.

Fulfilling that potential means doubling down on making great products, and I’ll continue to focus on that at Evernote, but it also means building a great company that’ll go head-to-head with entrenched behemoths that dominate this space. We’ve been looking for the perfect CEO to build such a company, to assemble and motivate a team of (eventually) thousands of hyper-talented people, to lead at scale. We’ve found such a person in Chris.

Chris joins Evernote following almost ten years in leadership roles at Google. Most recently, Chris headed global business operations within Google [X]. Prior to that, he led Google Canada, where he was responsible for all aspects of the company’s operations. Chris loves solving the hard puzzles of building great teams more than anyone I’ve ever met. Most importantly, Chris loves Evernote. He believes in what we’ve built and has the leadership experience to bring Evernote to all the people and companies that are sick and tired of outdated tools. Chris can help us achieve Evernote’s potential, so we can help billions of people achieve theirs. It’s what he does, and it’s exactly what we need.

I’m incredibly excited.

Join me in welcoming Chris O’Neill to the team!

– Phil Libin
Co-Founder and Executive Chairman


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27 Comments RSS

  • Enrico Nahler

    Congratulations Chris O’Neill! I am excited to see how you will shape the future of the modern workplace.

  • Vladimir Campos

    Congrats O’Neill and Phil. I’m really excited for the future to come!

  • Patrick McFarland

    I’m hoping Chris finally goes back to pushing for a better service instead of trying to push semi-related merch.

    Evernote just isn’t good enough for day to day use for everything YET is the best option we have. I love Evernote, I love Evernote as a service and as a brand, but the pace that Evernote itself as a service improves is frustratingly slow.

    Yes, Evernote is a business, but don’t forget what your business is: to help people organize their data, to be an external brain. Thats your single and only job, and nothing else should ever get in the way.

    • Kruno

      Well said. Agree 100% Focus on people who use the product. Listen to people who use your product. Make them feel cared for and they will take care of you. Simple.

    • Mike Kenyon

      Can’t agree more with Patrick McFarland’s comments.

  • Adam


  • Guilherme

    Good luck with it! not sure of the profile of the last CEO but if we was responsible for Google Operations in Canada that certainly means something. I really ask myself how long it will take to a quarter billion, half and full.. the more that tools like evernote spread the more they’ll get accepted and integrated in company workflows which are still oftentimes lightyears behind

  • Maxence Lerigner

    Congratulations to both of you!
    Chris, for joining such an amazing company and leading it to its next big step.
    Phil, for delivering such amazing products to millions of users and making the company grow into this solid multinational.
    Phil, you’ll surely stay close to the company but still… any plans for another gig?

  • Csaba Palos

    Wait, 8 years only? I have been using Evernote since 2005. It was an excellent product already at that time. Why do you ignore those years?

  • Loris


  • Troy

    I ask that as the system continues to evolve, please don’t break it! The software is central to my productivity. The PenUltimate design change hurt and forced many of us to other apps. Lets not change for the sake of change. Please focus on enhancements, not whole sale changes to “make your mark.”

  • Paul

    Congratulations Evernote and good luck Chris!

  • Opher Banarie

    Welcome aboard Chris!

    Will you be a “pro-podcast” executive, or an “anti-podcast” executive? I don’t think there has been an Evernote Podcast in at least a year…….

  • Giacomo Lawrance

    I hope that Evernote for Windows will be improved…

  • Evernote User

    I hope the core product, in particular, Evernote for Windows, improves. Then I’ll consider renewing my Premium membership.

  • Mostafa

    I’ve been always believing in Evernote and the people behind it. And so happy to see it moves even better.
    Good luck guys.

  • James Church

    Congrats….. Mr. Chris!! Now you are key person of this fantastic online notes sharing site. Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.

  • David Harrington

    Great choice, Phil. Chris was a powerhouse at Google Canada and now he will be a powerhouse at Evernote. From a selfish perspective, I hope Evernote can figure out the EDU sector. There are plenty of huge school boards in Canada and the US that keep asking me about Evernote’s strategy in EDU. A great toolset, a great brand and now a great CEO.

  • Fred Zelders

    Congratulations Chris and Phil.
    I use Evernote all the time. It’s a great service.

  • Fred Zelders

    And… I hope I can listen to Chris in the next Evernote Podcast/Blogcast 🙂

  • Bernt Månsson

    Chris, Will you make sure that there will be lots of new evernote podcasts. Looking forward to that.

  • Mike Kenyon

    Welcome to the team! However please take 5 minutes to read the forums and note what’s working good and bad. Currently your heading downwards adding functionality that isn’t required when other basic functionality is missing. We also have lots of bugs, I mean lots.

    However Evernote is a great product, love it in fact, but please go back to the core values. go back to what the the core Californians did eight years ago. That’s what made it popular, that’s what will keep you on top.

    Thanks for reading.

  • Nambirajan

    I have been using Evernote only for the last 3 weeks or so and love the product much. Should be a great experience to lead a product which is adding value to millions of people. Congratulations.

  • Cody

    Can your first order of business be to scrap the the webapp beta? It’s pretty worthless and I think most of the user base agrees.

  • Robert Kemp

    I have used Evernote for the past 5+ years and have never been satisfied with the Evernote for Windows desktop application.

    Having said that I am a staunch supporter of Evernote as it provides me with a tremendous amount of value. When using Evernote in the iOS environment or on the Web the performance of the apps, design and functionality are excellent. Unfortunately, the same can not be said for Evernote for Windows.

    Windows 10 Opportunity for Evernote?

    I have read in the press and on the Evernote website about the companies efforts to refocus its efforts on the app business. The new strategy makes complete sense, and I believe one of the best places to start is in the new Windows 10 environment and specifically the desktop app.

    With over 200 million installs of Windows 10 globally there is certainly access a vast universe of users. Windows 10 phone is still questionable as to whether Microsoft can grow this business.

    The current desktop app does not have the same functionality or performance characteristics as the MAC OS X version. Having had success in the MAC environment, it is a template for improving the Windows experience.

    Microsoft recently announced the iOS bridge to Windows 10 and have a new website for developers.

    I am not a software developer, but all of the signs are there for Evernote to leverage this opportunity and renew its presence in the market.


    Ps, I do not see myself adopting the MAC for my business or personal use. However, I consider my iPad Air and iPhone 5s as my external brain as they are invaluable in increasing my productivity.

  • Chong Zheng

    When creating a new note, a new window pops out. Please do not!

    After pasting an image to a note, the window scroll to the top Please do not!


  • L. Brown

    Wow! Limiting basic evernote to two devices sucks!