Picking Up The Reins

Dec. 21, 2004
Bill Carroll, acting president and COO of Dana Corp., talks about the recent death of company CEO Joe Magliochetti.
An outspoken voice in the automotive industry, Joe Magliochetti, Dana Corp.'s chairman and CEO, died on Sept. 22 at the age of 61 following complications from pancreatitis, for which he had been hospitalized. He had worked for the company for 37 years and was named president and CEO in 1999; chairman in 2000.Following his death, the company's board of directors named Bill Carroll, former head of its Automotive Systems Group, acting president and chief operating officer. Magliochetti had made news of late, leading the charge against a hostile-takeover attempt by smaller auto parts supplier ArvinMeritor Inc. The Dana board rejected ArvinMeritor's offer of $15 per share in late July. Toledo, Ohio-based Dana operates hundreds of plants and other sites in 30 countries, employs 60,000 people and reported 2002 sales of $9.5 billion.IW: How would you describe Joe Maglochetti's legacy at Dana? Carroll: His legacy quite frankly starts with integrity. Everything we do here at Dana is at the highest level, and Joe would see to that. He had the highest integrity. . . Joe set [about] the largest restructuring in the history of Dana Corp. He was able to help put it in place, get his managers to work in that direction and commit to solid objectives, solid plans and was working toward that. IW: Has anything changed with regard to ArvinMeritor's offer or the immediate strategic plan? Carroll: No. Everything that needs to be said on ArvinMeritor from my standpoint has been said. It's up to Arvin at this point in time. They made their offer, and the board responded to it. [As for startegy. . . ] We have a plan. We've been talking about the plan. We did the restructuring; we're completing that. We're on track for our third quarter and our fourth quarter. We've made commitments for '04. All of these things were done together, with Joe being the leader. Now, the staff has been passed. There's nothing formal to say other than that we will continue on with the plan that's laid [out] in front of us. IW: What is Joe Magliochetti's legacy to the automotive industry as a whole? Carroll: Let's just put it this way -- we have our ups and downs. It's a tough industry, but Joe loved it. It was a point of pride when things worked well, and certainly a point of disappointment when they didn't. You love your customers, and at times it's a difficult relationship, but that's our industry. Joe, with 36 years or so in the industry, understood it very well and built great relationships with people, and that's what our business is. It was something that was difficult, but he enjoyed it.

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