Ford Announces Retirement of Three Top Leaders, Names Successors

Three senior leaders at Ford Motor Co. in Dearborn — Joy Falotico, Stuart Rowley, and Steven Armstrong — have announced plans to retire after careers that span more than three decades at the automaker.
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Jim Baumbick, Ford's new vice president of product development operations, cycle planning, and internal combustion engine programs; and Dianne Craig, new lead of global Lincoln. // Courtesy of Ford Motor Co.
Jim Baumbick, Ford’s new vice president of product development operations, cycle planning, and internal combustion engine programs; and Dianne Craig, new lead of global Lincoln. // Courtesy of Ford Motor Co.

Three senior leaders at Ford Motor Co. in Dearborn — Joy Falotico, Stuart Rowley, and Steven Armstrong — have announced plans to retire after careers that span more than three decades at the automaker.

Falotico, president of Lincoln since 2018, is retiring Dec. 1. She will be succeeded by Dianne Craig, head of the Ford International Markets Group. She will report to Ford President and CEO Jim Farley.

“With Dianne’s global experience, her success in strengthening Ford’s IMG operations and her deep respect and knowledge of our dealer network, combined with her passion for Lincoln, Dianne is an incredible leader to advance the Lincoln brand,” Farley says.

Rowley, Ford’s chief transformation and quality officer also plans to retire Dec. 1. His responsibilities will fall to Jim Baumbick, vice president of product development operations, cycle planning, and internal combustion engine programs. Josh Halliburton, executive director of quality, now will report to Baumbick, further integrating quality improvement across workstreams in product development, including design, engineering, supply chain, and manufacturing.

“Quality is our No.1 priority as a company and Jim Baumbick is the right leader to deliver world-class quality and reliability at Ford with a disciplined process that runs from our supply chain to our engineering labs all the way to the factory floor,” Farley says.

Armstrong, vice president of India and South America Transformation, will retire Jan. 1, 2023, after 35 years with Ford. Going forward, responsibilities for Ford’s business in South America will be part of Ford Blue under its president, Kumar Galhotra, and Ford’s India operations will be part of Ford’s IMG unit. Additionally, Ford Business Solutions now will report to Mike Amend, Ford’s chief enterprise technology officer.

Falotico is credited with helping to drive the resurgence of Ford’s luxury brand, including its growth in China, strengthening the Lincoln retail network, and setting the stage for the brand’s electric and digital future.

“Joy has been a wonderful steward of Lincoln, building out its distinctive lineup of vehicles and experiences, polishing the Lincoln brand image, and overseeing a promising growth strategy in China,” Farley says. “As Lincoln embarks on its second century, it is well positioned to flourish with a new generation of electric and connected vehicles.”

Under Falotico’s leadership, Lincoln refined its Quiet Flight brand DNA manifested by elegant design, a smooth, quiet driving experience, and a sanctuary-like experience inside the vehicles, according to the company. During her tenure, Lincoln launched popular new models like the new Lincoln Aviator and Corsair, the Lincoln Zephyr in China and the Lincoln Star and Lincoln Model L100 concept vehicles.

She previously served as Ford’s chief marketing officer and chairman and CEO of Ford Credit.

Rowley’s career at Ford spanned more than 32 years, during which he served in a series of senior leadership roles, including as CFO of Volvo Cars; CFO of Ford of Europe; Ford’s global controller; head of strategy; COO of Ford North America; and president of Ford of Europe.

“No matter the role, Stuart has always taken on tough challenges and led positive change,” Farley says. “I’m especially grateful to Stuart for leading the redesign of our European business to become much leaner and focused on our commercial vehicles business and transition to EVs.”

Armstrong has held many senior management and purchasing positions for Ford-owned Jaguar and Volvo in addition to Ford of Europe. He was president of Ford South America, vice president and COO of Ford of Europe, and then group vice president and president of Ford of Europe, Middle East, and Africa. Prior to his current role, Armstrong was president of Changan Ford.

“Steve’s leadership has been critical to the significant improvement we have seen in many of our international markets,” Galhotra says. “He has taken challenging assignments in the Ford world and always made a positive difference.”

In 2020, DBusiness magazine featured Falotico as an honoree of its annual Powered by Women coverage, which can be found here.

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