General Motors board names CEO Barra chairman

Barra replaces Theodore Solso effective immediately.

DETROIT — General Motors CEO Mary Barra is also taking on the role of chairman at the nation’s largest automaker.

The company’s directors Jan. 4 unanimously elected her to lead the board, effective immediately. She’ll replace Theodore Solso, who will stay on as the board’s lead independent director, the company said in a statement.

Barra, 54, took over as CEO in January of 2014, becoming the first woman to lead a major global automaker. Her appointment came shortly before GM became embroiled in a scandal over faulty small-car ignition switches. But she led GM through the crisis and a related series of embarrassing safety recalls.

Barra replaced Dan Akerson, a former telecommunications and private equity executive, who also held the chairman and CEO roles before leaving GM.

© 2015 The Canadian Press

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