GM's Reuss was considered for CEO job in 2010, Whitacre says
January 23, 2013
General Motors Co.'s North American president, Mark Reuss, was considered for the top job at the automaker in 2010 before his lack of seasoning led the board to the current CEO, Dan Akerson, according to an excerpt from a forthcoming book by former CEO Ed Whitacre.
As GM, which restructured in bankruptcy with the help of a $49.5 billion U.S. taxpayer bailout, moved toward its fall 2010 initial public offering, Whitacre told the board he would not continue as CEO. His idea for his replacement was Reuss, according to the excerpt published today by Fortune magazine.
"Mark had zoomed up the executive chain in record time; he went from midlevel engineer to the No. 2 person in the company in the space of a year, more or less," Whitacre said of Reuss. "The plus was that Mark was showing a lot of poise and management potential. The downside was that he hadn't been in the job long enough to prove himself as a CEO."
Reuss, 49, is perceived by some Wall Street analysts and GM insiders as a potential heir apparent to Akerson. Other possible successors are Vice Chairman Steve Girsky, Chief Financial Officer Dan Ammann and global product development chief Mary Barra.
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