The Executives' Club of Chicago has named General Motors Co. (IW 500/5) Chairman and CEO Dan Akerson its International Executive of the Year.

Past recipients of the award include Bill Gates, founder and chairman of Microsoft Corp. (IW 500/16); Sam Palmisano, former CEO of IBM Corp. (IW 500/8); and Lawrence Ellison, founder and CEO of Oracle Corp. (IW 500/40).

The Executives' Club of Chicago noted that "top industry position, innovation, and personal and corporate modeling of values-based leadership" are among the criteria that it considers for the award,
"One of the top global auto manufacturers, GM has leading combined market share in the BRIC countries and is the top foreign brand in China," the club said in a news release. "The company has also announced investments of nearly $7 billion in manufacturing infrastructure since the bankruptcy and has hired or retained 17,800 jobs."

General Motors CEO Dan Akerson
The organization also noted that "Akerson has championed the inclusion of more women in senior management at GM, including the boardroom -- women comprise 33% of GM's board of directors, one of the highest percentages in all of American business."

The club will honor Akerson at a June 28 luncheon at Navy Pier in Chicago.

At the event, Akerson will address an audience of nearly 1,000 business and civic leaders "about American competitiveness, China and the future of manufacturing," according to the Executives' Club of Chicago.