Canadian Manufacturing

GM names product chief Mary Barra as new CEO

Move is one of several new postings as current CEO Dan Akerson steps down

DETROIT—General Motors’ board has named product development chief Mary Barra as the automaker’s next CEO.

Barra replaces current CEO Dan Akerson, 65, who accelerated his succession plan by several months after his wife was recently diagnosed with an advanced stage of cancer.

Barra is senior vice-president for global product development in charge of design, engineering and quality of all of GM’s vehicles. She’s also in charge of purchasing and has also led the company’s human resources department.

The board filled several other positions, naming Theodore Solso to succeed Akerson as chairman. Solso is the former chairman and CEO of Cummins, Inc., and has been a member of the GM Board since June 2012.

Dan Ammann, executive vice-president and chief financial officer, was named company president and will assume responsibility for managing the company’s regional operations around the world, including the global Chevrolet and Cadillac organizations and GM Financial.

Executive vice-president and president for North America Mark Reuss will replace Barra as executive vice-president, Global Product Development, Purchasing and Supply Chain.

Alan Batey, currently senior-vice president, Global Chevrolet and U.S. Sales and Marketing, will replace Reuss and is named executive vice-president and president for North American operations.

The company also announced that Steve Girsky, vice-chairman, Corporate Strategy, Business Development and Global Product Planning, will move to a senior advisor role until leaving the company in April 2014. He will remain on the GM Board of Directors.

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