In these gender-neutral times, it's time to ditch the 'man' from Chairman.
Embracing electrification with new EVs like the Mustang Mach-E and F-150 Lightning is not the only way Ford is adapting to the times. In a bold step, the Detroit Free Press reports that Ford is replacing the title "chairman" with "chair."
Effective immediately, Company Executive Bill Ford Jr., who is the great-grandson of company founder Henry Ford, is now known as "executive chair" of the company instead of "executive chairman." Ford's board voted to amend Ford's bylaws last week on July 8 to adopt more gender-neutral language throughout the company.
"Our roles at Ford aren't gender-exclusive and these changes help limit ambiguity, and drive the inclusive and equitable culture we're striving for," a Ford spokesperson told the publication. Other language changes being applied at Ford include changing "judges" of its shareholder elections to "inspectors of elections" and replacing "he" and "his" with non-gender-specific terms such as "director."
Ford isn't the only American automaker making language changes to improve gender equality. Since May, General Motors no longer refers to the company's CEO Mary Barra as "chairman" either. GM hasn't updated its bylaws to reflect the change, but the company's website has been updated and refers to Barra as "Chair and Chief Executive Officer".
"Mary Barra's title adjustment from Chairman and CEO to Chair and CEO is just one of many changes at General Motors in our journey to be the most inclusive company in the world," a spokesperson said. Taking a typically more radical approach, Elon Musk officially changed his title to "Technoking of Tesla" back in March, while Chief Financial Officer Zach Kirkhorn now has the title of "Master of Coin."
This is one of many steps being made to improve diversity in the auto industry. Stellantis recently partnered with the National Business League to develop black suppliers, while Bentley aims to increase diversity in its management team to 30 percent by 2025.