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GM management shake-up continues

Quality shift: Cathy Clegg’s move to vice-president of North American manufacturing is a part of GM’s wider overhaul of the company’s most senior management.

New NA manufacturing boss for GM and top-rung ‘operational excellence’ job created

30 Jun 2014

THE senior management overhaul at General Motors has continued with Cathy Clegg named as its new vice-president of North American manufacturing – a position that puts her in charge of more than 74,000 employees across 55 facilities in the US, Canada and Mexico.

Ms Clegg replaces Gerald Johnson, who has moved to a newly created position of ‘operational excellence’ vice-president, reporting directly to chief executive Mary Barra.

Mr Johnson’s new position is part of the steps GM is taking to improve safety in the wake of the ignition switch recall crisis. His role will include overseeing the company’s ‘Design for Six Sigma’ (DFSS) business process, which aims to better understand customer needs and design new products accordingly, with quality and reliability determined before a vehicle’s launch.

In April, former Holden boss and now global product development, purchasing and supply chain chief Mark Reuss revealed that every employee across its global engineering, powertrain and product programs would be required to have full DFSS certification by the end of next year.

 center imageLeft: Vice-president of North American manufacturing Cathy Clegg.

Ms Clegg has worked for GM for more than three decades, most recently serving as vice-president of global manufacturing engineering. She will be replaced in this role by Kurt Wiese, the current executive director of global product development.

GM has issued more than 40 recalls so far this year covering some 20 million vehicles globally (including some called back multiple times).

New safety-related setbacks are also continuing to surface, such as US dealers being asked last week to stop delivering the top-selling Chevrolet Cruze sedan until a potential airbag problem was sorted out.

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