Nissan Announces Leadership Changes in the Americas

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Nissan today announced a number of leadership changes within its North and South American operations.

These changes will help accelerate additional progress in the new fiscal year following a successful year of major product unveils and launches including the Nissan Altima, Sentra, Pathfinder and upgraded all-electric LEAF, which makes Nissan's current lineup among the freshest in the industry.

The company celebrated several record-breaking months for sales and continued to expand its manufacturing footprint in North America. Adding production of the Nissan Pathfinder, Sentra and LEAF, as well as the Infiniti JX, to the U.S. has moved the company closer to the goal of having 85 percent of Nissan vehicles sold in the U.S. built in North America.

The following changes are effective April 1, unless otherwise noted.


Nissan Division Sales

Randy Parker is named regional vice president, West Region. He will report to Al Castignetti, vice president and general manager, Nissan Division. Parker holds complete regional responsibilities for the expanded West Region.

Eric Rodgers, currently regional vice president, West Region—North, is named general manager, Dealer Network Development Task Force reporting to Leon Dorssers, chief customer officer and vice president of Customer Quality and Dealer Network Development (CQ & DND).

Judy Wheeler, currently director, Marketing, Nissan Canada, is named regional vice president, Southeast region, reporting to Castignetti.


Nissan Division Marketing

Joni Paiva, currently director, Marketing Strategy and Volume Planning for Renault in Paris, is named director, Chief Marketing Manager (CMM), Nissan Juke, Quest, Versa, Sentra and Cube, effective May 1.

Fred DePerez, currently director, CMM, Nissan Juke, Quest, Versa, Sentra and Cube, is named director, CMM, Nissan Altima, Maxima and GT-R, effective May 1.

Scott Shirley, currently director, CMM, Nissan Altima, Maxima and GT-R is named director, CMM, Body-on-Frame and Crossover vehicles effective May 1.

Erik Gottfried, currently senior manager, CQ & DND, is promoted to director, Electric Vehicle (EV) Sales and Marketing.


Customer Quality and Dealer Network Development

Don Strong, currently Overseas Program Director (OPD), is named director, Customer Experience, CQ & DND effective May 1.


Parts & Service (P&S)

Kent O'Hara, currently director, P&S and Marketing and Sales, is promoted to a newly created position as senior director, After Sales (AS) for the U.S. and Canada and P&S Projects and Strategy for the Americas. O'Hara's role expands with oversight of AS for Canada and a focus on the revenue growth of the overall P&S strategy.



Hiroshi Shiotani, currently general manager, Supply Chain Management Planning at Nissan Motor Company, Ltd. (NML), will assume the role of senior director, Manufacturing and Engineering, Nissan Production Way, Canton Vehicle Assembly Plant.

Brian Sullivan, currently director, Manufacturing Engineering and Maintenance, Smyrna Vehicle Assembly Plant, is named director, Smyrna Battery Plant.

Jeff Deaton, currently director, Smyrna Battery Plant, is named director, Manufacturing Engineering and Maintenance, Smyrna Vehicle Assembly Plant.


Nissan Mexicana (NMEX) Manufacturing

Sergio Casillas, currently sub-director of the new manufacturing plant in Aguascalientes, is promoted to director, Manufacturing, NMEX. Casillas will be responsible for vehicle assembly production.

Oswaldo Noriega is promoted from sub-director to director of Product Engineering, Aguascalientes.


Purchasing and Renault-Nissan Purchasing Organization (RNPO)

Robert Pitt, currently director, Vehicle Purchasing, is promoted to a new assignment as senior director, Production Purchasing. Pitt will be responsible for leading cost reductions and sourcing costs for production purchasing.

Emmanuel Boudon, currently director, Purchasing Projects Management and Supply Division, is named director, Vehicle Purchasing.

Larry Pavey, currently senior manager, Purchasing, is promoted to director, Purchasing Operations Management and Materials. This is newly created position will support the day-to-day operations of Nissan's plants, lead cost-reduction initiatives and manage supply chain and raw materials.

Michael McClelland, currently director, Supplier Quality and Assurance (SQA), assumes the role of director, Purchasing Project Management and SQA.



John Schnoes, currently, director, Electrical Engineering at Nissan Technical Center North America (NTCNA), is named deputy program director, Vehicle Information Technology at NML.

Tetsuo Sasaki, currently general manager, EV Energy Development at NML, is named director, Electrical Engineering at NTCNA.

Total Customer Satisfaction (TCS)

Mikio Aoki, currently general manager, Quality at Nissan's Tochigi plant, is named to the newly created position of senior director in charge of Manufacturing Quality Assurance for Nissan North America. Aoki will lead plant quality improvements for products made in North and South America.

Tomohiro Aoki, currently director, Field Quality is named director, TCS Strategy and Administration.


Nissan Design America (NDA)

Shinichiro Irie, currently Associate Product Chief Designer based at Nissan Global Design Center in Atsugi, Japan, will take a foreign assignment position as the director of design at NDA in San Diego. Irie will be responsible for design project output, as well as production phase design development for several key products for the region.


Corporate Planning and Program Management Office (PMO)

Hiroshi Toyoshima, currently vice president, Corporate Planning and PMO-Nissan Americas, is named program director Light Commercial Vehicles at NML.

Manabu Sakane, currently technical assistant to Chief Recovery Office at NML is named vice president, Corporate Planning and PMO at Nissan's North American headquarters in Franklin, Tenn.

Bruno Grippay, director, OPD at Nissan Brazil (NBA), is named deputy program director, V-platform at NML.

Eric Sipe, currently director, PMO is named director, Corporate Planning OPD at NBA.

Dana Frierson, currently senior manager, PMO, is promoted to director, OPD, Light Commercial Vehicles and Body-on-Frame.

Tom Smith, currently director, Chief Model Marketing, Body-on-Frame and Crossover Vehicles, is named director, OPD-Infiniti, effective May 1.

Trisha Jung, currently director, Vehicle Connected Services (VCS), is named as Dealer Operations Manager for the Atlanta market.


Human Resources

Anish Baijal, currently director, Talent Management, is promoted to division general manager, Organizational Development at NML.

Mike Webb, currently director, Business Transformation, is named director, Talent Management.

Tracy Jones, currently director, HR Business Partner, is named director, Total Reward.

Sean Suggs, currently director, TCS Strategy and Administration, is named director, HR Business Partner responsible for R&D, Purchasing, TCS and Manufacturing Engineering.

Takashi Kosaka, currently general manager, HR Planning at NML, is named director, HR Foreign Service Assignments and Short-Term Assignments and HR Planning.


Nissan Canada (NCI)

Brian Thomas, joins NCI as director of Marketing. Thomas most recently held positions with Volkswagen of America as the executive general manager, Brand Experience and Dealer Integration.


Nissan Brazil (NBA)

Shingo Mukaida, currently process manager at NBA, is named director, Product Engineering.

Masato Takiguchi, currently director, Industrial, NBA, will return to NML as Manufacturing Project Leader of Manufacturing and Industrial Engineering Division New Plant Preparation Department.


About Nissan
Nissan Motor Co., Ltd., Japan's second-largest automotive company, is headquartered in Yokohama, Japan, and is part of the Renault-Nissan Alliance. Operating with more than 248,000 employees globally, Nissan provided customers with more than 4.8 million vehicles in 2011, generating revenue of 9.4 trillion yen ($118.95 billion US). With a strong commitment to developing exciting and innovative products for all, Nissan delivers a comprehensive range of 64 models under the Nissan and Infiniti brands. A pioneer in zero-emission mobility, Nissan made history with the introduction of the Nissan LEAF, the first affordable, mass-market, pure-electric vehicle and winner of numerous international accolades, including the prestigious 2011-2012 Car of the Year Japan and 2011 World Car of the Year awards.

About Nissan North America
In North America, Nissan's operations include automotive styling, design, engineering, consumer and corporate financing, sales and marketing, distribution and manufacturing. Nissan is dedicated to improving the environment under the Nissan Green Program 2010 and has been recognized as a 2010 and 2011 ENERGY STAR® Partner of the Year by the U.S Environmental Protection Agency. More information about Nissan in North America and the complete line of Nissan and Infiniti vehicles can be found online at and

With a strong commitment to developing exciting and innovative products for all, Nissan delivers a comprehensive range of fuel-efficient and low-emissions vehicles under the Nissan and Infiniti brands. A pioneer in zero emission mobility, Nissan made history with the introduction of the Nissan LEAF, the first affordable, mass-market, pure-electric vehicle and winner of numerous international accolades including the prestigious 2011 European Car of the Year award.

For more information on our products, services and commitment to Sustainable Mobility, visit our website at


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Travis Parman

Director, Corporate Communications, Nissan Americas

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Issued by Nissan