General Motors has appointed Tim Lee as its new vice president of global manufacturing. While taking on the new post, Lee will remain as president of GM’s international division, still supervising the carmaker’s operations in regions like China, Russia and South Korea. Lee replaced Diana Tremblay, who is now the vice president of North American manufacturing. Tremblay, who was GM’s vice president of global manufacturing since 2011, will now report to Lee. GM’s new vice president of global manufacturing started his career in the automaker in 1969 as an intern. He rose up the ranks until he was appointed as president of GM’s international division, which accounts for 40 percent of the company’s global sales volume.
As president of GM’s international division, Lee has responsibility for overseeing manufacturing in Europe and North America and has jurisdiction over 60 plants across 15 countries. GM chief executive and chairman Dan Akerson spoke highly of Lee, saying that his extensive manufacturing experience and his current role as president of GM’s international division will help deliver quality vehicles that “keep pace with GM's global growth." Lee’s appointment represents Akerson’s second major shuffle of the carmaker’s executives since last week, when he appointed GM vice chairman Steve Girsky to replace Karl-Friedrich Stracke as acting head of the auto company’s European unit, Opel.
According to a GM spokeswoman, the latest shuffle will allow Tremblay to concentrate on the busiest U.S. vehicle-launch schedule that GM has had in many years. The carmaker is retooling four North American truck plants this year in time for the launches of the next generations of its full-sized pickups and sports utility vehicles in 2013.