Six New Directors to Join Lear Board

Crain’s Detroit Business, November 8, 2009

By Ryan Beene

A crew of auto industry veterans and financial executives is expected to replace six of Southfield-based Lear Corp.’s nine current board members if it emerges from bankruptcy as expected today:

An exhibit to the plan Lear filed Nov. 2 said the following individuals would join Lear’s board:

  • Curtis Clawson, CEO of Hayes Lemmerz International Inc. Clawson is leading Hayes Lemmerz through its own Chapter 11 reorganization.
  • Phil Murtaugh, former CEO of Chrysler’s Asia-Pacific operations.
  • Donald Runkle, former Delphi Corp. vice chairman and longtime General Motors executive and current CEO of EcoMotors International Inc., a Troy-based startup that is developing a new ultrahigh-efficiency diesel engine design.
  • Greg Smith, former vice chairman of Ford Motor Co. and principal of consulting firm Greg C. Smith L.L.C.
  • Thomas Capo, chairman of Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group Inc.
  • Jonathan Foster, managing director of New York-based private-equity firm Current Capital L.L.C. Foster has an extensive financial background and previously held positions at Bear Stearns, Lazard Ltd., Wachovia Securities and the Cypress Group.

Lear CEO Robert Rossiter will be the board’s chairman.

Current board members Conrad Mallett, CEO of Detroit-based Sinai-Grace Hospital and Henry Wallace, former Ford group vice president and CFO will remain on the board.

Mel Stephens, Lear’s vice president of corporate relations and global communications, said the board members were selected with input from the company’s lenders, bondholders and other stakeholders.