Effective September 1st, GM North America is shuffling the leadership deck. Steve Carlisle is to become the executive vice president and President of GM North America. As a career General Motors employee, Carlisle is tasked with navigating through a challenging recovery and a dynamic shift into alternative mobility.

In GM’s press release regarding the leadership change, Chairman and CEO Mary Barra noted Carlisle’s rise through General Motors ranks and his distinct ability to help transition the company. She said, “Steve will help us scale the considerable transformation progress we have been making, while at the same time preserving the sufficient autonomy necessary to maintain four distinct vehicle brands. This role will build on Steve’s progressive leadership within GM, particularly over the past two years at Cadillac. This change will also improve the collaboration and decision making that fuel innovation.”

In the realignment, Carlisle will be responsible for GM’s sales, service, and marketing. The structure is in line with all other brands in the North American portfolio.

Steve Carlisle’s History

Steve Carlisle
Stephen K. Carlisle – President, GM North America

As a standout from the typical progression to a seat at the corporate table, Steve Carlisle is unique. According to his profile on the General Motors corporate website, his career with General Motors began in 1982 as an industrial engineer co-op student at the Oshawa Truck Assembly Plant in Ontario, Canada.

Carlisle has since occupied roles as president and managing director of Southeast Asia Operations from 2007 to 2010, then a brief time as U.S. Sales Operations vice president in 2010. His next five years, until 2014, were as vice president of Global Product Planning and Program Management.

More recently, Steve Carlisle acted as president and managing director of GM Canada until being named senior vice president and president of Cadillac in April 2018. 

Barry Engle Seeking New Opportunities

GM’s outgoing president, Barry Engle, will relinquish his seat at the end of August. His vast experience ranges from more than a decade with Ford, President and CEO of New Holland Agricultural Equipment, CEO of electric vehicle startup THINK, and more.

“Barry has been a strong contributor to our transformation efforts – first in South America, then more broadly across all operations outside North America and China, and ultimately running North America,” said Barra.  “The cumulative impact of his efforts over the past five years leave us fundamentally better positioned to deliver on the vision of zero crashes, zero emissions, and zero congestion.”

Rory Harvey Promoted

Mary Barra made mention of the new Cadillac vice president, Rory Harvey who is tasked with global operations on a day-to-day basis. His tenure with General Motors also spans more than 30 years with a variety of leadership positions in Europe and the Middle East before joining Cadillac in March 2018.

“Rory has been one of the chief architects of Cadillac’s brand strategy, working with Steve,” Barra said. “He has a strong commitment to Cadillac, its dealers and customers, so we will have great continuity as Steve takes on broader responsibilities.”


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