Tag Archive | "Board of Directors"

Mary Barra Named New Chairman of GM


DETROIT — The General Motors Board of Directors unanimously elected Mary Barra as its next chairman, effective immediately. She succeeds Theodore Solso, who will serve as the Board’s Lead Independent Director.

“At a time of unprecedented industry change, the board concluded it is in the best interests of the company to combine the roles of Chair and CEO in order to drive the most efficient execution of our plan and vision for the future,” Solso said. “With GM consistently delivering on its targets and on track to generate significant value for its shareholders, this is the right time for Mary to assume this role.”

Barra has served as CEO of GM since Jan. 15, 2014, a role she will retain. Solso said that Barra has set a clear vision for the organization over the past two years, formed a strong leadership team from within and outside the company, delivered strong operating results, and led the introduction of breakthrough vehicles and technologies.

“The board has improved the overall governance of the company over the past two years and as lead independent director, I expect to continue to build on this solid foundation,” Solso said. “The board also plans to broaden its active engagement with shareholders as we go forward.”

Prior to becoming CEO in 2014, Barra had served as executive vice president of global product development, purchasing and supply chain since August 2013, and as senior vice president of global product development since February 2011. She was responsible for the design, engineering, program management and quality of GM vehicles around the world.

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GM Nominates Pharmaceutical Company Exec to Join Board


General Motors Co. said Friday it is nominating the CEO of Novartis International AG, a Switzerland-based pharmaceutical company, to join the board of directors, reported The Detroit News.

The Detroit automaker also announced longtime board member E. Neville Isdell, 71, will not stand for re-election to the board in June because of the board’s retirement policy at age 72. His retirement is the second for the board this year.

Joseph Jimenez, 55, who has served as CEO of Novartis since 2010, will stand for election at GM’s annual stockholders’ meeting June 9 in Detroit. With his addition, the board will have 12 members, including 11 non-employee directors.

“Joe brings a wealth of consumer insights gained from a distinguished career in the pharmaceutical and packaged goods industries, as well as a proven focus on enhancing shareholder value over time,” GM Chairman Tim Solso said in a statement. “We look forward to leveraging his expertise in product innovation and global consumer markets.”

Jimenez joined Novartis in 2007, and previously served as non-executive director of AstraZeneca PLC, in the United Kingdom and as an adviser for the Blackstone Group, a private equity organization in the U.S. He also has held senior leadership positions at H.J. Heinz Co. and Clorox Co., where he began his career in 1984.

Isdell, former chairman and CEO of the Coca-Cola Co., has served on GM’s board since July 2009 when it emerged from bankruptcy and was on the board for General Motors Corp. from 2008 to 2009.

Solso and GM CEO Mary Barra thanked Isdell for his leadership and contributions to GM.

“We have made significant progress and benefited greatly from Neville’s insight and experience, especially in global brand management,” Barra said in a statement.

Last month, GM said Erroll B. Davis, a retired superintendent for Atlanta Public Schools, had notified the company he plans to retire from the board and wouldn’t seek re-election at the company’s annual meeting. Davis, 70, joined the GM board in July 2009 and previously served as a member of the General Motors Corp. board from 2007 to 2009.

In February, GM’s board added Linda Gooden, former executive vice president of Lockheed Martin Corp. Gooden, 62, started her career at the former Packard Electric Division of GM.

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Ford Names Former FCC Chair Kennard to Board as Neal Retires


Ford Motor Co. named former U.S. Federal Communications Commission chairman William Kennard to its board, adding someone with Washington experience as the auto industry faces increased regulatory scrutiny amid mounting recalls, reported Bloomberg.

Kennard, 57, will succeed director Homer Neal, who has reached mandatory retirement age, Dearborn, Michigan-based Ford said in a statement today. Kennard, who is also a former U.S. ambassador to the European Union, is currently chairman and co-founder of Velocitas Partners LLC, an asset management firm. His appointment to the automaker’s board is effective Jan. 1, one day after Neal steps down.

As chair of the FCC from 1997 to 2001, Kennard presided over the agency’s approval of AOL Inc.’s $124 billion acquisition of Time Warner Inc., a marriage that later foundered.

Kennard will serve on Ford’s Nominating and Governance Committee, the company said.

Neal, who served on the board for 18 years, is leaving before his term ends in May to focus his role as president-elect of the American Physical Society and his work with the University of Michigan, where he has served in a variety of roles, including chair of the Department of Physics, according to the statement.

Ford’s shares fell 1.9 percent to $14.99 at the close in New York, as the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index dropped 1.6 percent.

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Bill Fox Elected NADA Chairman for 2015


SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. – The National Automobile Dealers Association’s board of directors has elected Bill Fox as chairman for 2015.

Fox, who represents New York’s franchised new-car dealers on the NADA board of directors, will assume the position of chairman and CEO at the 2015 NADA Convention & Expo next January.

“It is a true honor to serve this industry and this board. This is an exciting time for the auto industry and for dealers across the country,” Fox said. “We will continue to advocate strongly for dealers, and the franchise system which is the best and most efficient model for consumers, dealers and manufacturers alike.”

He currently serves as a partner in Fox Dealerships, which sells Chevrolet, Chrysler, Dodge, Honda, Jeep, Ram, Subaru and Toyota brand vehicles in the upstate New York cities of Auburn and Phoenix.

Jeff Carlson, who represents Colorado’s dealers on NADA’s board, was elected vice chairman. He is president of Glenwood Springs Ford and Glenwood Springs Subaru in Glenwood Springs, Colo., and partial owner of Summit Ford in Silverthorne, Colo.

Neale Kuperman, who represents dealers in New York City, was elected treasurer. David Shepherd from Kansas was elected secretary.

The election took place at NADA’s board meeting in Scottsdale, Ariz.

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Chrysler Board Adds 6 New Directors


Chrysler Group LLC said Friday it nearly doubled the size of its board, adding some key company executives and the former chief financial officer of Philip Morris International, reported The Detroit News.

The Auburn Hills unit of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV said it named former tobacco company CFO Hermann G. Waldemer as one of six new directors who started Monday. One director, Douglas Steenland, a former Northwest Airlines chief executive, is stepping down after five years on the board. The board now has 13 members.

The other new board members are:

  • Reid A. Bigland, head of U.S. sales, Chrysler Group; chairman, president and chief executive officer, Chrysler Canada Inc.; president and chief executive officer, Ram Truck brand; member of Fiat SpA Group Executive Council.
  • Giorgio Fossati, general counsel, Fiat SpA
  • Michael J. Keegan, senior vice president, human resources, and corporate sustainability officer, Chrysler Group LLC; member of Fiat SpA Group Executive Council.
  • Michael Manley, president and chief executive officer, Jeep brand; chief operating officer for Asia Pacific and lead executive for International Operations, Chrysler Group; member of Fiat SpA Group Executive Council.
  • Richard K. Palmer, chief financial officer, Chrysler Group; chief financial officer, Fiat SpA; member of Fiat SpA Group Executive Council.
  • “I welcome this group of strong leaders to the board,” said Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne. “Their collective experiences will help propel us forward as we begin to execute our five-year plan.”

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