Why did you want to work in the auto industry? It chose me. I did an internship at GM my last two years of college, and I absolutely loved it and never looked back. We get to play with beautiful, fast cars. If you have to work that many hours, it's a nice playground to go to.

First automotive job: In 1987, with Ford Motor, as a district manager in training.

Proudest professional achievements: At BMW, being part of the committee that chose the agency for Mini. At Volvo, it was integrating an unhappy retail network into a partnership with the factory. At Jaguar, launching the brand in a new way. At Fisker, it's building the brand from the ground up.

Current challenge at work: The magnitude of what has to be done at Fisker. At a company like this, there is not one piece of the equation. It's not a singular function. Everything is horizontal across the organization. Because of our size and culture here, you work with everybody.

Why does the auto industry seem like a difficult environment for female executives? The auto industry has always given me an opportunity to learn and progress. It always just felt like I should be doggone good at what I was doing, that it was the same opportunity that they would give anyone else.

Dream job: Ultimately, I want to be able to take what I do to the next level, blending the philanthropic piece of the equation. Like taking batteries from our vehicles and powering a village in Africa or Appalachia. Of course, we need the business part of the proposition to work as well.

On being sensual: We have some very sensual photos of a woman posed with the car on the Fisker Web site ( I've gotten a lot of phone calls from women who have seen the site. And they understand you can be sensual while not being overtly sexual. The high heel stepping on the fuel pump is such a strong decision point, one that impacts our lives and the environment. I wanted to do that in a sensual way vs. something more traditional. Responsible luxury has evolved, and that has given us the permission to do things differently in the creative sense.

What you do to relax: The water is the best relaxation. When you are out on a surfboard, no one can find you. And I go out with friends and laugh.

— Mark Rechtin