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Ford Shakes Up European Product Development

Barb Samardzich named first woman head of PD for Ford of Europe.

by on Aug.12, 2011

Barb Samardzich will take over product development duties for Ford of Europe.

Ford Motor Co. has named Barb Samardzich, vice president, Global Product Programs, to the position of vice president product development of Ford of Europe, effective Sept. 1.

The 52-year-old Ford veteran becomes the first woman to take on such a senior product development role for the Dearborn automaker – though rival General Motors moved a step ahead by naming Mary Barra its global product chief earlier in the year.

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In her new post, Samardzich will oversee all Product Development activities in the European region – but because of the increasingly global nature of Ford’s operations, she will have a direct impact on products – such as the Ford Focus and C-Max – that are filling the maker’s line-up worldwide.