Following the departure of Bob Socia as vice president, Global Purchasing and Supply Chain (read more here), General Motors has named Grace Lieblein (pictured) as his successor, responsible for its purchasing activities and supply chain and logistics operations worldwide.

“Grace’s track record is a diverse and very successful one that has prepared her well for this critical role,” said GM Vice Chairman Stephen Girsky. “Her wealth of experience in product development, manufacturing and general management gives her the insight needed to lead our Global Purchasing and Supply Chain organisation and develop mutually beneficial and productive relationships with our suppliers.”

Prior to her latest appointment, Lieblein was president and managing director of GM do Brasil, a role she held since April 2011. She was also previously president and managing director, GM de Mexico.

Lieblein joined GM in 1978 as a co-op student at General Motors Assembly Division in Los Angeles. Since then, she has held a variety of leadership positions in engineering, product development and manufacturing.

She will manage the global purchasing and supply chain organisation from Brazil until she relocates to Detroit early next year. Jaime Ardila, regional president of GM South America will assume the presidency of GM do Brasil on a temporary basis.

Kim Brycz, who has served as acting vice president, Global Purchasing and Supply Chain since October, will continue in her role as executive director, Indirect Materials, Machinery and Equipment.

Michael Wysocki has left finished vehicle carrier and logistics provider United Road Services to pursue other interests. Kathleen McCann, who joined United Road as president in January 2011, has succeeded Wysocki as CEO in addition to her established duties.

Wysocki had been CEO of United Road since 2003 and is a transport veteran with nearly 40 years of experience. Between 2000 and 2003 he served as president of the company's Transport Business Unit. He founded MPG Transco, a Livonia, Michigan based transport company, and served as president and CEO from its set up until it was acquired by United Road in 1999.

“After 40 years in various logistic formats, the last 20 in finished vehicle logistics founding United Road, I am pursuing opportunities in energy logistics and development through my platform company wydrocarbon,” Wysocki told Automotive Logistics News.

This week United Road was sold to private equity firm Charlesbank Capital Partners. It was previously owned by The Gores Group, which bought United Road in 2007.

McCann will continue to lead the company as president and CEO.

“Charlesbank is a great fit with United Road’s vision of being the supplier of choice for vehicle logistics in North America,” said McCann. “We were in great hands with Gores, and in partnering with Charlesbank, we will be able to continue our market expansion and grow our service offerings. United Road’s deep team of professionals, from our drivers to our technology wizards, is poised to begin a new chapter in this exciting journey.”

United Road serves 10,000 customers annually, including OEM suppliers, rental agencies, auctions, web-based logistics firms and individual customers. The company moves nearly 2m new, remarketed and specialty vehicles each year.

Catherine Dobson has moved to a new position as manager of External Inbound, Packaging and Vehicle Outbound at Volvo Trucks in the US. Dobson was previously acting senior manager of Process Development at Volvo Group Logistics Services.

She was also a senior project manager at the division for three years, leading projects to create and implement processes for new and existing product flows across Volvo businesses including Mack and Volvo trucks, bus and construction equipment.

In her new role she will also be overseeing Packaging Engineering for the Americas region.

Volvo Trucks is undergoing a major reorganisation worldwide said Dobson and pointed toward forthcoming innovative transport solutions.

Ryder System’s chairman and CEO Gregory Swienton is to retire from his position at the US transport and logistics provider’s annual shareholder meeting next May. He will be succeeded by president and chief operations officer Robert Sanchez.

As part of the succession plan Sanchez will be sworn in as president and CEO in January but will serve in the role of executive chairman until the annual meeting of shareholders. Swienton will serve in an advisory capacity for a period of time following his retirement.

Swienton joined Ryder in June 1999 as president and COO and was made CEO the following year.

“Over the past 14 calendar years, I’ve had the good fortune to work with our Ryder team to truly make a positive difference for our shareholders, customers and the communities we serve. The initiatives and changes we’ve made over time in all aspects of our business model and culture will serve as a solid foundation in the years ahead,” said Mr. Swienton. “The very talented team that will remain in place under the trusted leadership of Robert Sanchez gives me great confidence that Ryder will continue to thrive and deliver on its commitments and potential well into the future.”

Sanchez has been with Ryder for 19 years and has served in a number of senior executive leadership positions in operations, finance and information technology. He has been a member of the company’s Executive Leadership Team since 2003.

International commercial property developer Goodman has named Philippe Van der Beken as managing director for continental Europe.

From 2005 to 2008 Van der Beken was a Goodman executive for corporate transactions and board member of the Goodman European Logistics Fund. Between 2008 and 2010 he worked outside Goodman, and developed real estate projects in Europe and Brazil.

Van der Beken will report to Danny Peeters, CEO for continental Europe. Peeters will become an executive director in January and take a seat on Goodman’s board, where he will provide support for successor planning. In his last position he was the general manager of Inter Real Estate Trusty, a Brussels-based property developer of inner city mixed-usage projects.

Goodman provides property development and facility management services to a range of industries including automotive. It is currently developing Volkswagen’s supply facility in Hanover that includes 45,000-square-metre undercover storage area at the Schwarze Heide park.

Ruth Waring, managing director of Labyrinth Logistics Consulting, has joined the board of The Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport in the UK (CILT).

Waring has held several positions in the logistics industry with companies including Exel and Gefco. She also founded Women in Logistics UK, an interest group concerned with attracting women into the logistics profession and ensuring supply chain professionals have a strong voice in the industry.

Ruth started the organisation in 2008 as a group on the professional networking LinkedIn website, and within three years it had 2,000 members and was hosting educational, industry and networking events.

“I am honoured to be joining the board of the CILT to represent the interests of women in the logistics sector,” said Waring. “I have been a member for all my professional career and I am an enthusiastic advocate of the Institute’s work. However I am delighted that the board has recognised that more can be done in this vital area and I very much look forward to meeting the challenges ahead by working together.”

Ruth brings not only her insights and perspectives from WiL, but also as a recognised expert in legal compliance, safety and quality management within transport operations. I look forward to Ruth’s impact on our discussions and developments,” said CILT Chairman Neil Ashworth.

Following the news that Malcolm Wilson has been appointed managing director of Norbert Dentressangle’s Logistics Division (read more here), the company has announced that Phil Shaw will head up its UK Logistics business.

Previously director of Norbert Dentressangle’s Packed Chemicals and Manufacturing business unit in the UK, Shaw has spent 2012 in the Middle East as operations director in a joint venture with Danone, one of Norbert Dentressangle’s strategic partners.

“Despite the worst recession in living memory, Norbert Dentressangle’s UK logistics business has grown significantly in the last five years,” said Shaw. “While a lot of people thought they could wait out the recession, we realised early on that this was the new norm and we had to be not just efficient and flexible, but also innovative, in order to be appropriately responsive to our customers needs.

“To achieve this, we need the best people and, despite our continued growth, are committed to a decentralised organisation, which promotes a spirit of enterprise, customer contact and combines the performance of the business with individual development, making Norbert Dentressangle a great place to work.”