In 1981, James McDonald (GMI class of 1944) became the 16th president of General Motors Corporation. McDonald began his career as a General Motors Institute student sponsored by the Saginaw Malleable Iron Plant. In 1955, at the age of 32, he was named plant manager at one of GM's largest foundries in Defiance, Ohio. His steady rise upward included general manager positions at Hydra-matic, Pontiac Motor and Chevrolet Division.
Perhaps one of the most notable aspects of McDonald's career was his strong support of the union and corporate efforts to improve the quality of work at GM. Under McDonalds' leadership, GM evolved from a national corporation to a global automotive power. His rise to success exemplifies the American Dream in his journey from student/foundry worker to president of one of the world's largest corporations.
F. James McDonald
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