Two senior leadership team changes were announced by Ford on Thursday, a move the company said is meant to further strengthen delivery of its One Ford plan for profitable growth.
Elected as a Ford vice president and leader of the company’s new Global Dealer and Consumer Experience organization is Elena Ford, who since 2009 has served as director of Ford’s Global Marketing Operations.
The great-great-granddaughter of Henry Ford and the granddaughter of Henry Ford II, Elena Ford joined the company in 1995.
Her prior experience includes the role of executive vice president of Ford Motor Credit Global Brand and Marketing, where she was responsible for marketing, product management and sales support activities for Ford Motor Credit Co. around the world.
Ford has also held director’s roles in North America product marketing, planning and strategy; business strategy, international automotive operations; and e-marketing and e-solutions for ConsumerConnect, among others.
In her new role, Ford will report to Jim Farley, executive vice president of global marketing, sales, service and Lincoln, the company said.
The new Global Dealer and Consumer Experience organization is being created to advance the automaker's dealer and consumer-dealer experiences, the company said, including global standards and best-practice sharing for planning, training and customer interaction at both the dealer level and within the company.
The new organization will also be responsible for the marketing, sales and service interface for Ford’s global order-to-delivery system, its effort to improve vehicle quality and delivery time from the factory to dealers and customers.
"Our new Global Dealer and Consumer Experience organization is the next step in our One Ford plan for profitable growth," Farley said. "Our new vehicles today are recognized around the world as leading in quality, fuel efficiency, safety, smart design and value. Now, we plan to bring that same standard of excellence to the dealer experience for our Ford and Lincoln customers worldwide.
"Elena Ford is the perfect leader to work with our global dealers and to help realize the opportunity we have in upgrading the consumer experience there," Farley added. "She has extensive experience in global marketing, and her passion for our dealers is well known around the world."
Also announced on Thursday is the appointment of Ray Day as group vice president for communications. Day has led the communications team as its vice president for the past five years.
He will continue to report to Ford chief operating officer Mark Fields, and will remain responsible for the company’s global external and internal communications and public relations activities, the company said.
Day joined Ford in 1989; he has previously served as executive director of global corporate communications and of global automotive communications.
"Ray Day is a proven global leader who continues to take the company’s communications capabilities and the telling of our Ford story to increasingly higher levels," said Ford president and chief executive officer Alan Mulally. "Ray and his team are ensuring that everyone associated with Ford understands our One Ford plan and the progress we are making delivering profitable growth."
Both appointments are effective March 1.