Raj Nair, Ford Motor Co.’s executive vice president and president, North America, resigned from the company effective immediately.
His departure comes after an internal investigation into reports of inappropriate behavior. The company said the review determined certain behavior by Nair was inconsistent with the company’s code of conduct.
“I sincerely regret that there have been instances where I have not exhibited leadership behaviors consistent with the principles that the Company and I have always espoused,” Nair said in a released statement. “I continue to have the utmost faith in the people of Ford Motor Company and wish them continued success in the future.”
Ford officials did not release any information about the nature of his transgression or detail about the investigation, but the Detroit News reported that the investigation began as a result of an anonymous tip. The company didn’t return a phone call from TheDetroitBureau.com.
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Nair has been president of Ford North America since June 1, 2017. Prior to that, he served as Ford’s head of global product development and chief technical officer. Nair’s replacement will be subject to an announcement in the near future.
“We made this decision after a thorough review and careful consideration,” said Ford President and CEO Jim Hackett. “Ford is deeply committed to providing and nurturing a safe and respectful culture and we expect our leaders to fully uphold these values.”
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The company is especially sensitive behavioral issues in light of the problems at the company’s plant in Chicago, Illinois. Allegations of sexual harassment and assault caused Hackett to travel to the plant to address the issue with employees.
Armed with a quick wit and a plethora of technical knowledge, Nair rose through the company’s engineering ranks. However, his ascendance to Ford’s upper executive echelon occurred when former Boeing COO Alan Mulally took over as CEO.
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In 2012, he took over as Director of Global Product Development from Derrick Kuzak. Prior to that, he handled a broad range of engineering duties at Ford over the last quarter century, including as the top engineer for global product development.