Steven Croley to join the American automaker as the new GC and chief policy officer
Ford Motor Company has roped in the former Obama administration lawyer Steven Croley as its next general counsel and chief policy officer. Croley joins the American automaker from Latham & Watkins where he was a partner.
The new appointment comes at a time when Ford Motors is in the process of ramping up its capabilities in rapidly evolving areas including connectivity, electric vehicles and digital services.
Croley joined the international automaker on 12 July and will oversee matters including government relations, sustainability, safety, legal and privacy.
He takes over from Ford veteran John Mellen, who delayed his retirement to become the company's legal chief last year after former GC Bradley Gayton quit to join The Coca-Cola Company. Mellen will retire from Ford on 1 September following a transition of responsibilities to Croley.
"Steve has deep leadership experience at the intersection of law and policy and will add strength to our terrific legal, government relations and sustainability teams… His background will be invaluable as we partner with governments and others to speed development of breakthrough products," Jim Farley, Ford President and CEO, said.
Croley was associated as a partner with Latham & Watkins in its Washington DC office. As a member of the firm's litigation and trial department, he advised clients on energy and the environment.
Croley served in the former President Barack Obama administration for seven years. From 2014 to 2017, he served as general counsel for the US Department of Energy and spent the previous four years in the White House, first as special assistant to President Obama for regulatory policy, then as deputy counsel overseeing legal policy.
Croley will report to Farley who became Ford CEO in October last year and work closely with diplomat Jon Huntsman. Huntsman, a member of the Ford board of directors was appointed vice-chair of policy in April. In his role, Huntsman advises Farley and executive chair Bill Ford.
Ford's chief government relations officer and vice president of sustainability, environment and safety engineering – both company officers – will report to Croley. Rebecca Pagani, who is joining Ford as the chief privacy officer from Amazon this month will also report to Croley. As a senior corporate counsel at Amazon, Pagani advised on issues and policy related to e-commerce, cloud computing, digital streaming and AI businesses.