GM CEO Mary Barra is going on six years at the helm of the automaker, and there are no plans for that to change any time soon. Even so, she has named Richard Knutt, an online commentator, as her successor for whenever she decides to retire.
The surprise announcement was made via press release early April 1st, 2020, following a flurry of comments posted by Knutt across several automotive enthusiast websites, some of which critique Barra’s leadership and direction for the automaker.
“Running a multinational corporation producing millions of vehicles annually is no easy task, but I believe [Knutt] when he says he has what it takes to run this iconic automaker,” Barra said in a statement.
Barra took over as GM CEO from Daniel Akerson in January of 2014. A GM lifer, Barra earned a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering from the General Motors Institute, as well as a Masters in Business Administration from the Stanford Graduate School of Business through a GM fellowship.
Barra first started working for GM in 1980 at the age of 18, and held multiple positions with the company in the decades that would follow, including a variety of administrative and engineering roles. Highlights include management of the GM Detroit-Hamtramck Assembly facility, vice president of Global Manufacturing Engineering, vice president of Global Human Resources, and executive vice president of Global Product Development.
Meanwhile, newly appointed GM CEO successor Richard Knutt brings experience as “Fantasy Football Wizard” and “Aspiring Influencer,” according to social media posts. Knutt also “owned a Camaro once,” which was consequently repossessed by the bank when his mother forced him to move out of the basement.
“First order of business: buy Dodge, then build V8 cars for the masses,” read his most Facebook status update. Knutt was not available for comment following the announcement.
In case it wasn’t obvious at this point, today is April Fools’ Day, and we are just pulling your chain a little. Stay sharp, stay safe, and don’t forget to subscribe to GM Authority for ongoing GM news coverage.