Honda Announces Changes to its U.S. Executive Leadership

Feb. 22, 2012
The automaker has promoted Tetsuo Iwamura, although he will keep his post as head of Honda's North American operations.

Honda on Tuesday announced several U.S. management changes "designed to strengthen its North American regional operations to further speed decision-making and increase efficiency and competitiveness within the region."

Tetsuo Iwamura -- president of American Honda Motor Co. Inc., chief operating officer of North American Regional Operations and a senior managing officer of Honda Motor Co. Ltd. -- will be promoted concurrently to executive vice president and executive officer, effective April 1, Honda said in a news release.

Iwamura will stay in his post as president and retain all his responsibilities as head of American Honda and Honda's North American region, the automaker added.

Shareholders will need to approve Iwamura's appointment to the board as representative director of Honda Motor Co. Ltd. at the annual meeting in June.

Honda also announced that Erik Berkman will become president of Honda R&D Americas Inc., effective April 1. Berkman will be responsible for all design and product development.

Berkman joined Honda in 1982 and worked at Honda R&D Americas from 1991 to 2008, leading the development of a number of Honda and Acura products.

Berkman currently is vice president of corporate planning and logistics for the Automobile Operations Division of American Honda Motor Co. and president of Honda Performance Development Inc., Honda's racing company in North America.

Berkman will succeed Hiroshi Takemura, who will return to Japan as deputy director of automobile operations.

Honda announced several other management moves:

  • Art St. Cyr will succeed Berkman as vice president of corporate planning and logistics for the Automobile Operations Division of American Honda Motor Co. and president of Honda Performance Development on April 1. St. Cyr currently is chief engineer and led the development of the 2011 Odyssey at Honda R&D Americas' Ohio Center.
  • Brian Newman will become president of Honda South Carolina Mfg. Inc., in Timmonsville, S.C., where Honda produces all-terrain vehicles. Newman, who has been with Honda for 32 years, currently is senior vice president of Honda South Carolina.
  • Charles Ernst has been named chief engineer of the powertrain function at the North American Engineering Center at Honda of America Manufacturing Inc. in Ohio, where he will be responsible for expanding Honda's new-engine technologies for its North American operations. Ernst, who joined Honda in 1985, currently is senior vice president at Honda Manufacturing of Alabama LLC, responsible for engine and vehicle manufacturing operations.
About the Author

Josh Cable | Former Senior Editor

Former Senior Editor Josh Cable covered innovation issues -- including trends and best practices in R&D, process improvement and product development. He also reported on the best practices of the most successful companies and executives in the world of transportation manufacturing, which encompasses the aerospace, automotive, rail and shipbuilding sectors. 

Josh also led the IndustryWeek Manufacturing Hall of Fame, IW’s annual tribute to the most influential executives and thought leaders in U.S. manufacturing history.

Before joining IndustryWeek, Josh was the editor-in-chief of Penton Media’s Government Product News and Government Procurement. He also was an award-winning beat reporter for several small newspapers in Northeast Ohio.

Josh received his BFA in creative writing from Bowling Green University, and continued his professional development through course-work at Ohio University and Cuyahoga Community College.

A lifelong resident of the Buckeye State, Josh currently lives in the Tremont neighborhood of Cleveland. When the weather cooperates, you’ll find him riding his bike to work, exercising his green thumb in the backyard or playing ultimate Frisbee.  

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