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More GM Management Changes Announced

Lutz is one step closer to the door, as Chairman Whitacre reshapes the still struggling automaker.

by on Dec.04, 2009


Whitacre is making a clean sweep of GM's top management.

GM Chairman and CEO, Ed Whitacre, took another step this morning at reshaping the loss-making company with a particular emphasis on North America.

Mark Reuss is now president of GM North America. Reuss was briefly vice president of Engineering after leading GM’s Holden operations in Australia in 2008.

Reporting to Reuss will be Susan E. Docherty, who is appointed vice president, Vehicle Sales, Service and Marketing operations.

Also aligned under the new North American group will be Diana D. Tremblay, who is named vice president, Manufacturing and Labor Relations.  Tremblay was most recently vice president of Labor Relations.

Denise C. Johnson is named vice president, Labor Relations. Johnson was most recently vehicle line director and chief engineer for Global Small Cars.

Bob Lutz remains vice chairman, although his direct reports have been moved to other executives. Lutz “will act as advisor on design and global product development.” GM said in a statement.

What this means is that Lutz will eventually retire, in what is now a clean sweep of GM’s top management following the firings or resignations of Rich Wagoner, the chairman Whitacre replaced at the insistence of the U.S. Treasury’s Auto Task Force as a precondition for a financial bailout.

The previous CEO, Fritz Wagoner, a GM finance staff lifer, was fired or was resigned by Whitacre earlier this week. GM’s complacent finance staff came under whithering criticism from former Task Force head Steven Rattner in as a speech this fall.

“I want to give people more responsibility and authority deeper in the organization and then hold them accountable,” Whitacre said. “We’ve realigned our leadership duties and responsibilities to help us meet our mission to design, build and sell the world’s best vehicles.”