General Motors has reorganized its design management again, the second such shakeup in the last year. Mark Adams, who currently serves as the company's executive director of global Cadillac and Buick design is headed back to Europe to take over as vice president of design for GM Europe. According to Automotive News, the move is the first step in a plan to sort out a plan for the future of Buick and Opel, both in terms of strategy and design language. Andrew Smith will take over Adams' old position here in the States. Smith leaves his spot at Holden as the brand's design director.

Meanwhile, Ken Parkinson is set to move into the executive director of global Chevrolet design and architecture position. Helen Emsley will be promoted to the position of executive director of global GMC design and user experience while John Puskar will fill Emsley's old role as design director of interior full-size trucks and performance cars. Sharon Gauci will take over Puskar's duties as design director of global color and trim. You can read the full press release on the managerial changes below for more information.
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GM Global Design Announces Leadership Team Changes

WARREN, Mich. – GM Design today announced several changes to its global leadership team designed to increase the emphasis on the company's vehicle brands, including Opel and Buick.

The new Global Design structure will further enhance the focus on joint strategies, theme development and innovation.

"I am confident that this alignment will continue to unite our global team around its passion for designing vehicles that make an emotional connection with customers – and our mission that every new product we develop has to be a great vehicle," said Ed Welburn, vice president, Global Design.

The changes take effect Sept. 1. The GM Design employees receiving new assignments are:

Mark Adams, currently executive director, Global Cadillac and Buick Design and GME vice president, Design, will return to Germany and assume the position of GME vice president, Design, and champion for Opel/Buick brand strategies and design language.

Andrew Smith, currently design director, Holden Design, will be promoted to executive director, Global Cadillac and Buick Design, replacing Mark Adams. Smith will be the champion for the Cadillac brand and will lead the Global Color and Trim team. He will be based in Warren, Mich.

Ken Parkinson, currently executive director, Global Chevrolet and GMC Design, will be executive director, Global Chevrolet Design and Architecture. Parkinson will be the champion for the Chevrolet brand.

Helen Emsley, currently design director, Interior Full-Size Truck and Performance Car, will be promoted to executive director, Global GMC Design and User Experience. Emsley will be the champion for the GMC brand.

John Puskar, currently design director, Global Color & Trim, will replace Emsley as design director, Interior Full-Size Truck and Performance Car.

Sharon Gauci, currently design manager, Buick Color & Trim, will be promoted to the position of design director, Global Color and Trim, replacing Puskar.

Clay Dean, director, Global Advanced Design, will continue to lead Advanced Design in North America. He will also be the champion for Advanced Design activities globally.

The first and largest global automotive OEM design function, General Motors Design has a network of 10 Design Centers in seven countries around the world. More than 2,000 men and women are responsible for the design development of every GM concept and production car and truck globally. The Design Centers are located in the United States, Germany, Korea, China, Australia, Brazil and India. GM Design is led by Ed Welburn, vice president, Global Design. Welburn is just the sixth Design leader in GM history and the first to lead all of the company's Global Design Centers. GM Design was established in 1927 as 'The Art and Colour Section' by the legendary Harley Earl, and celebrated its 85th anniversary in 2012.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 17 Comments
      mdcwave
      • 1 Year Ago
      "More than 2,000 men and women are responsible for the design development of every GM concept and production car and truck globally" That, my friends, is the biggest problem.
      Britt Benston
      • 1 Year Ago
      Hire Freeman Thomas. Someone who gets it.
      Max Bramante
      • 1 Year Ago
      Cadillac has the worst team designer worldwide, seriously, their cars are too squared and definitely not classy, the last good looking Cadillac is been the Allante wich was designed by my famous paisan Sergio Pinfinfarina.
        OptimusPrimeRib
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Max Bramante
        Saying that their last good car was the Allante severely drops your credibility. That car sucked and their new cars have been classy, bold, unique, and very good looking.
      car czar
      • 1 Year Ago
      This is clear indication GM is on the brink of another bankruptcy or another round of downsizing. When you start mixing management around so often your clearly in panic mode. They are trying plug the gaps hoping someone has the right answers. I think GM needs to bring in some outside managers, clearly their present crop aren't doing to well.
        Domenico Monti
        • 1 Year Ago
        @car czar
        Actually GM is doing well and sales are up again. They had a stable growth and their market share increase since 2009-2010. So im not sure where you're getting this but clearly you are very biased...
      marc.mitchell
      • 1 Year Ago
      Not one of these guys can hold a candle to William L. Mitchell. Not even ol' Ed.
        • 1 Year Ago
        @marc.mitchell
        [blocked]
        TopGun
        • 1 Year Ago
        @marc.mitchell
        A very different time - You think Mr. Mitchell had to worry about meeting international pedestrian safety standards? @Laser - I'd like to know who is in your top 10 styling leaders. I'd bet your top 10 would include many companies that sell very very few models. The CTS, ATS, Lacrosse, Impala, Cruze all demonstrate great proportions to me. And Lincoln and Acura for two wish they had the momentum that Cadillac has.
          Upsidedown
          • 1 Year Ago
          @TopGun
          @TopGun, all the cars you mentioned from the current GM line are poorly proportioned and dated designs especially the Lacrosse, Impala, and Cruze. GM is just not the design leader anymore and that becomes clear with every new model. If Bill Mitchell would be alive today, he wouldn't be impressed by what Cadillac is doing today but could definitely style better looking cars even with the latest pedestrian safety requirements. You can bet on that.
      Justin Shaw
      • 1 Year Ago
      Beyond the CTS, Camaro, and Corvette GM products have never impressed me. I guess the Chevy SS is something to look forward too, but it won't even be offered with a manual like the G8. Man I miss that car.
      m_2012
      • 1 Year Ago
      At the moment they get it right with the ATS, its time to muck it up again. Welcome back old GM. Here is your check.
      OptimusPrimeRib
      • 1 Year Ago
      Please don't mess up the current Cadillac styling. Everything they have been making as of lately have been knockouts. Just continue as you are.
      deysc
      • 1 Year Ago
      Awesome, Looking forward to working with GM soon!
      Jeff
      • 1 Year Ago
      I'd love to see them move on from their vertical tailight "We were cool in the 50's" design theme. While true, that was almost 60 years ago. MOVE ON.
      blaurge
      • 1 Year Ago
      I suppose being a global company they like to move top executives around the world to gain exposure. I wonder what Mr. Smith's design style is like and what influence can be expected?
      Judah Richardson
      • 1 Year Ago
      As with all such changes, you win some, you lose some ... but in this case I'd love to see the next CTS (after the incoming one) get a more sporty rear design to match that of the current/outgoing one. Also, someone needs to decide exactly what the XTS is all about. It's supposedly to retain DTS buyers, but the TV ads feature younger drivers. Meanwhile the car itself doesn't match up well with anything else in its supposed class ...
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