GM Appoints Former Tesla and Google Executive as Manufacturing Head

General Motors (GM) has announced significant leadership changes, with long-time executive Gerald Johnson retiring from his position as executive vice president of global manufacturing and sustainability. Johnson, who has served GM for 44 years, will be succeeded by Jens Peter “JP” Clausen, a former executive at Tesla, Lego, and most recently, Google. Clausen's appointment marks a strategic move by GM to bring in fresh leadership with extensive experience in innovative technology-driven companies.

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Alongside Johnson's retirement, GM also disclosed the unexpected departure of Mike Abbott, executive vice president of software and services, citing health reasons. Abbott, a former Apple executive who joined GM in May, expressed in a LinkedIn post that he has been facing serious health issues involving his heart. Baris Cetinok, the current vice president of product in software and services and also a former Apple executive, will serve as Abbott's interim replacement while a search for a permanent replacement is conducted. These leadership changes, effective April 2, 2024, signify GM's ongoing efforts to strengthen its executive team and navigate through evolving industry landscapes. Despite Johnson's retirement, GM stated that he will remain with the company through the rest of the year to ensure a smooth transition.

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