General Motors has appointed a veteran company executive to a new global safety role to quickly identify and resolve product safety issues amid a broad external and internal review of its safety procedures.

CEO Mary Barra named Jeff Boyer to the newly created position of vice president of global safety on March 18. The appointment comes in the wake of heightened regulatory scrutiny tied to GM's ignition switch safety recall.

Boyer has served the company nearly 40 years in a wide range of engineering and safety positions at GM. He assumes global responsibility for the safety development of GM vehicle systems, confirmation and validation of safety performance, as well as post-sale safety activities including recalls, GM said.

Boyer will provide regular and frequent updates on vehicle safety to Barra, senior management and the General Motors Board of Directors.

"Jeff's appointment provides direct and ongoing access to GM leadership and the Board of Directors on critical customer safety issues," said Barra. "This new role elevates and integrates our safety process under a single leader so we can set a new standard for customer safety with more rigorous accountability. If there are any obstacles in his way, Jeff has the authority to clear them. If he needs any additional resources, he will get them."

"Nothing is more important than the safety of our customers in the vehicles they drive," said Boyer. "Today's GM is committed to this, and I'm ready to take on this assignment."

Boyer, 58, will report to John Calabrese, vice president of global vehicle engineering. He will also become a member of the global product development staff, led by Mark Reuss, executive vice president of global product development, purchasing and supply chain.

Boyer, who began his GM career in 1974 as a co-op student, has held several senior engineering, safety and process leadership positions, including the role of a total vehicle integration engineer. His most recent position since 2011 was executive director of engineering operations and systems development.

Before that, Boyer served as executive director of global interior engineering and safety performance, in which he was responsible for the performance and certification of GM vehicle safety and crashworthiness. 

Boyer holds a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering from Kettering University and a master's degree in business administration from Michigan State University.


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