Ford taps Fields as new CEO

Ford Motor Company announced today that Alan Mulally has decided to retire from the company July 1, and Mark Fields will be named to replace him as Ford’s new president and chief executive officer.

“From the first day we discussed Ford’s transformation eight years ago, Alan and I agreed that developing the next generation of leaders and ensuring an orderly CEO succession were among our highest priorities,” Executive Chairman Bill Ford said. “Mark has transformed several of our operations around the world into much stronger businesses during his 25 years at Ford. Now, Mark is ready to lead our company into the future as CEO.”

Mulally, 68, is retiring after nearly eight years leading Ford and capping a remarkable 45-year career. He led Ford’s transformation and strengthened its position as one of the world’s leading global automakers, navigating the global financial meltdown of 2009 without taking a bailout from the U.S. government. Under Mulally, Ford has achieved 19 consecutive quarters of profitability, developed the strongest product lineup in Ford’s history and embarked upon the company’s most ambitious global expansion in the past half century.

“Alan deservedly will be long remembered for engineering one of the most successful business turnarounds in history,” Bill Ford said. “Under Alan’s leadership, Ford not only survived the global economic crisis, it emerged as one of the world’s strongest auto companies. We always will be grateful to Alan for his leadership, compelling vision and for fostering a culture of working together that will serve our company for decades to come.”

The transition in July is approximately six months earlier than previously anticipated.

“Alan and I feel strongly that Mark and the entire leadership team are absolutely ready to lead Ford forward, and now is the time to begin the transition,” said Bill Ford.

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