GM taps Cynthia Brinkley as its new head of human resources

Article by Christian Andrei, on June 6, 2011

General Motors has named Cynthia Brinkley to be its new vice president of global human resources. In this role, the 51-year-old Brinkley will oversee GM’s 202,000 employees throughout the world.

She is a telecommunications veteran and has been working for AT&T Inc. since 1986. Most recently, she worked as its senior vice president of talent development and chief diversity officer where one of her responsibilities is to develop the company’s future leaders.

She will report directly to GM CEO Dan Akerson. In a statement, Akerson said that Brinkley has a “strong track record for driving business results and leading talent management.” She will also serve on GM’s executive operations committee.

Brinkley isn’t the only telecom executive appointed by Akerson, who also has an extensive experience working for phone companies such as Nextel Communications Inc. Last January, Akerson appointed Nextel executive Linda Marshall to be the president of GM’s OnStar telematics division.

Brinkley is the replacement of Mary Barra, who became GM’s head of product development last January. Since then, Barra had been keeping the two jobs.

When Brinkley worked for AT&T, she was instrumental for the company being recognized by Chief Learning Officer Magazine as the top company for learning and development. AT&T is composed of 260,000 employees.

Originally from Missouri, Brinkley is a trustee of Washington University in St. Louis. He also serves as the co-chairwoman of a $1 billion fund-raising campaign at University of Missouri, which is where she received her bachelor’s degree in journalism.

Press Release

GM Names Cynthia J. Brinkley to Lead Global Human Resources

Cynthia (Cindy) J. Brinkley has been appointed GM Vice President, Global Human Resources, effective July 1, General Motors announced today.

Brinkley joins GM from AT&T Inc., where she was senior vice president, talent development/chief diversity officer responsible for identifying and developing future leaders, companywide training, employee engagement and diversity management.

“Cindy has a strong track record for driving business results and leading talent management,” said GM Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Dan Akerson. “She is a well-rounded executive who brings strong human resources experience to our company. We are happy to have her join GM at this time.”

Brinkley, 51, will report to Akerson and serve on the company’s Executive Operations Committee. She succeeds Mary Barra, who earlier was named senior vice president of Global Product Development but has continued to lead human resources while a global search for her successor was conducted.

At AT&T, Brinkley helped achieve significant recognition on DiversityInc’s Top Companies for Diversity list in 2010 and 2011. Under her leadership, AT&T was recognized as the No. 1 company for learning and development by Chief Learning Officer Magazine.

Brinkley is chairman of the National Oasis Institute and is a member of the Board of Trustees of Washington University in St. Louis. She also co-chairs the University of Missouri’s Billion Dollar Fundraising Campaign and is a member of the Trulaske School of Business Strategic Development Board. Brinkley was recognized as Webster University’s School of Business & Technology, Woman of Influence in 2010.

About General Motors – General Motors (NYSE: GM, TSX: GMM), one of the world’s largest automakers, traces its roots back to 1908. With its global headquarters in Detroit, GM employs 202,000 people in every major region of the world and does business in more than 120 countries. GM and its strategic partners produce cars and trucks in 30 countries, and sell and service these vehicles through the following brands: Baojun, Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC, Daewoo, Holden, Isuzu, Jiefang, Opel, Vauxhall, and Wuling. GM’s largest national market is China, followed by the United States, Brazil, the United Kingdom, Germany, Canada, and Italy. GM’s OnStar subsidiary is the industry leader in vehicle safety, security and information services.

Topics: gm

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