Ford retools leadership team after warning of supply chain problems

Top, from left: Roz Ho and John Lawler.  Bottom, from left: Sammy Omari and Jae Park

Within 72 hours of warning Wall Street that it planned to spend $1 billion more than expected this quarter on supply chain costs, Ford Motor Co. announced reorganizing part of its executive leadership team that oversees supply chain management and product development — while adding yet more Silicon Valley tech talent.

Parts shortages delay production and delivery, frustrated customers and disappoint investors. Pickups awaiting parts are stockpiled in lots around Dearborn and other cities.

Ford, which has seen its stock price drop with the disappointing news, said in a news release Monday that these latest leadership changes would “strengthen product creation and transform global supply chain management.”

The company noted in the release that the situation is fluid while it hunts for a leader to manage the situation.

Ford President and CEO Jim Farley speaks to the media after he and DTE officials announce, during a press conference at Wayne Ford Michigan Assembly Plant Modification Center on Aug.  10, 2022, a historical deal between the two entities where Ford will be powering all its Michigan factories with sustainable energy.

Ford continues poaching executives from high-profile Silicon Valley companies as the 119-year-old automaker pushes deeper into electric vehicle (EV) production and digital connection.

The latest management changes include:

  • Doug Field expanding his job as chief advanced product development and technology officer while Ford Model e increases its all-electric operations. He’ll continue overseeing electric vehicles, software and digital systems development, and driver assistance, while now assuming design and vehicle hardware engineering.
  • Jim Baumbick taking on the role as vice president, product development operations, cycle planning and internal combustion engine programs to run all product development for Ford Blue.
  • John Lawler, Ford chief financial officer, stepping in as interim chief global supply chain officer to “oversee a makeover of Ford’s global supply chain operations” until someone is chosen for the job.
  • Roz Ho joining the company in October after working three years as vice president and global head of software at HP in Palo Alto, California, and before that companies including Microsoft.
  • Jae Park, a former vice president at Google and Amazon, joining Ford in August as vice president, digital product design, according to his LinkedIn business profile. He spent more than 11 years at Microsoft as a creative director and design lead.
  • Sammy Omari joining Ford as executive director of advanced driver assist technologies. His profile on LinkedIn describes him as vice president of engineering, head of autonomy and mapping at Motional, the driverless vehicle joint venture between Hyundai and Aptiv. Previously, Omari oversaw motion planning, software motion controls and prediction at Lyft. He also worked as director of engineering, in charge of robotics, computer vision and machine learning, at GoPro.
  • Rob Bedichek, formerly of Intel and Apple, continuing a role as executive director of platform architecture that he began in December, according to LinkedIn. He designs computer systems and services. Ford announced his hire with these latest developments.
  • Lisa Drake, vice president, EV industrialization, now running manufacturing engineering as Ford works to get to production rate of 2 million electric vehicles annually by the end of 2026.
  • Chuck Gray, who has been vice president, EV technology, becoming vice president, vehicle hardware engineering.
  • Both Drake and Gray reporting to Field, as does Anthony Lo, Ford’s chief design officer.
  • Jonathan Jennings, vice president, supply chain, taking on additional responsibility for supplier technical assistance and quality and report to Lawler.

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