Toyota's Jim Press Named Chrysler President

Will Report to CEO Nardelli

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DETROIT (AdAge.com) -- Toyota veteran Jim Press has left the automaker and is joining Chrysler as vice chairman and president, the automaker said today.
Jim Press
Jim Press

Mr. Press, a well-respected industry executive who rose to become the first non-Japanese president of Toyota Motor North America, will report to new Chrysler Chairman-CEO Robert Nardelli. Mr. Press will also join the board of directors of the "new" Chrysler. He'll oversee sales both internationally and in North America, along with global marketing, product strategy, service and parts.

Same title as LaSorda
Mr. Press holds the same title as Tom LaSorda, the former Chrysler Group CEO who was moved to vice chairman and president after new majority owner Cerberus Capital Management tapped Mr. Nardelli as CEO.

Mr. Press spent 37 years at Toyota, and helped grow the company to one of the biggest car companies in the U.S. He's the second Toyota executive to join Chrysler; Deborah Wahl Meyer, formerly VP-marketing of Toyota's Lexus brand, arrived as VP-chief marketing officer last week.

"Tom LaSorda and I are thrilled that one of the most successful executives in the history of the auto industry has joined our leadership team at the New Chrysler," Mr. Nardelli said in a statement. "Our top team now consists of a world-class 'supply' leader in Tom and an equally world-class 'demand' leader in Jim."
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