Lordstown Motors makes executive appointments

By Chad Elmore12 July 2022

Bell named vice president, Product Creation, Engineering and Supply Chain

Foxconn The Lordstown Endurance commercial pickup on the floor of the Work Truck Week show in Indianapolis in March 2022. (Photo: Chad Elmore)

Lordstown Motors Corp., an original equipment manufacturer (OEM) of electric vehicles focused on the commercial fleet market, announced several key executive appointments to its senior leadership team.

  • Daniel A. Ninivaggi was elected to serve as executive chairman of the board of Lordstown Motors. In this role, Dan will focus on corporate strategy, strategic partnerships and capital raising.
  • Edward T. Hightower, the company’s president, has been elected to the additional role of Chief Executive Officer, effective immediately. He will also continue to serve as CEO of MIH EV Design LLC, LMC’s product development joint venture with Foxconn. He has also been elected to the Board of Directors of Lordstown Motors.
  • Dr. Donna Bell, a former Ford Motor Co. executive with almost 30 years of automotive product development and technology innovation leadership experience, has been appointed executive vice president, Product Creation, Engineering and Supply Chain, effective immediately.
  • Andrew Reyntjes, a 30-year veteran of the automotive and commercial fleet industry, was appointed senior vice president, Sales, Service and Marketing, effective June 29.
  • Jill Coniglio-Kirk was appointed vice president of People & Culture, effective June 20. Jill has more than 20 years of experience in automotive human resources roles and building out early-stage organizations.
  • Jane Ritson-Parsons will be transitioning out of the role of Chief Commercial Officer and become an advisor to the company.

“We now have a focused leadership team with vast experience in developing, launching and commercializing vehicles,” said Hightower. “I’ve just returned from two weeks in Taiwan meeting with Foxconn and exploring our joint product development opportunities. I look forward to strengthening our partnership and confirming our first vehicle program over the next several months. The LMC team also remains laser focused on launching the Endurance this quarter, with commercial deliveries expected in the fourth quarter.”

“Since joining Lordstown Motors, recruiting an experienced and talented management team has been a key priority. With the recent closing of the Foxconn transactions and the launch of our new Foxconn joint venture, Lordstown Motors has shifted to a more engineering and product development focused OEM,” said Daniel Ninivaggi, former CEO and now executive chairman of Lordstown Motors. “I will continue to focus on strategic and financial matters, working closely with Edward and CFO Adam Kroll.”

“With over 30 years of automotive experience and having made significant contributions to the Endurance launch preparation and Foxconn transactions, Edward is the perfect person to lead the company and launch our product development efforts with Foxconn.”

“As the Endurance gets closer to production and we select partners for our first joint venture vehicle, our commercial strategy will also be critical. Andrew will accelerate the development of our commercial fleet partnerships. Finally, we are in an industry with emerging technologies and the need for constant innovation. Jill will be a key member of our senior management team, with a particular focus on recruiting and developing the best EV engineering talent.”

Bell has nearly 30 years of leadership experience in engineering, product development, purchasing, quality, mobility and autonomous vehicle strategy, and research.

Foxconn Dr. Donna Bell (Photo: Lordstown Motors).

Her work in the development of electronic modules and infotainment systems led to multiple patents. Bell also served as research operations director at Ford’s Palo Alto Innovation Labs.

“The excitement of a startup appeals to me,” said Bell. “Lordstown, and its partner, Foxconn, have the potential to reinvent how vehicles are developed and manufactured. It is the ultimate challenge.”

“Along with our intense focus on the Endurance launch, we are actively working to plan and develop additional vehicles and mobility solutions for our commercial fleet customers. Dr. Bell’s extensive experience in the high-quality execution of vehicle programs, technologies, and innovations will make her an excellent addition to our team. As EV performance attributes and features are becoming more defined and driven by software, Donna’s leadership and track record will build on the strengths of the Lordstown Motors team and play a key role driving the success of the joint venture,” said Hightower.

The company’s Endurance all electric pick-up truck is expected to be the first vehicle being launched in the company’s Lordstown, Ohio, facility. The company is the primary development partner with Taiwanese multinational electronics contract manufacturer Foxconn for MIH vehicles in North America through its recently established joint venture.

Lordstown Motors has corporate, engineering, and research and development facilities in Ohio, Farmington Hills, Mich. and Irvine, Calif.

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