2006 – Saugatuck, Michigan
Bobbie Gaunt was the first woman to enter Ford Motor Company’s Sales & Marketing Management Program in 1972. Twenty-nine years later she retired as a corporate vice president and President & CEO of Ford of Canada. Her career included many firsts as a woman within Ford and the auto industry, where she became well known as a leader unafraid to speak her mind, including challenging how the industry addressed the needs of women as employees and customers alike. She was known for creating a positive envi-ronment for employees and addressing work/life balance concerns. At Ford of Canada, Bobbie spear-headed the construction of an on-site child care center, and then, a new headquarters to ensure that employees had a leading-edge environment and technological tools for doing business in the 21st century. She led the successful launch of more than two dozen new cars and trucks over 36 months, established the company as a leader in e-commerce, and developed an effective growth strategy benefiting dealers and customers alike. In 2000, she was named one of the “100 Leading Women in the North American Auto Industry”, and honored with YWCA of Greater Toronto’s “Women of Distinction Award”. In 2000, Bobbie received the International Automotive Hall of Fame’s “Distinguished Service Citation”, in 2001 was named a Distinguished Alumni Fellow by the University of Pittsburgh, and in 2006 was named one of the “50 Most Influential Women in Western Michigan.” A lifelong advocate of giving back to the community, Bobbie mentors young entrepreneurs and business women. She serves as a Lead Director of The Great Atlantic and Pacific Tea Company and is a board member of ADVO, Inc., Windsor, CT, and Metro, Inc., Montreal, Quebec. She serves on the Board of Visitors of the Katz School of Business and the Board of Trustees at her alma mater, the University of Pittsburgh; and chairs the Board of Directors of the Saugatuck Center for the Arts. And recently, Bobbie became of partner of Capitol Motors Group.