40 years is a long time to be someplace, especially in the auto industry. As such, nobody can really fault Jim Padilla for stepping down as Ford Motor Company's President and Chief Operating Officer come July 1. The automaker's 2nd in command started off at Ford in 1966 as a quality control engineer and worked his way up the chain, leading manufacturing ops for Ford, Mercury and Lincoln in North and South America and Jaguar before being promoted to executive vice president, then president and COO.

Padilla's duties will fall to chairman and CEO Bill Ford, who is heading up a new executive group made up of the Blue Oval's executive vice presidents.

[Sources: Associated Press via ABCNews.com; Ford Motor Company]


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