CEO, LG Chem Power Inc.
Chosen because: Patil, 61, is a Ford alumnus who from 1998 to 2003 led the team that began work on the Ford Escape Hybrid. LG Chem Power Inc., the U.S. unit of South Korean battery maker LG Chem, is working with General Motors and Ford to supply lithium ion battery technology for the Chevrolet Volt and electric Focus. In July 2010 the company broke ground on a plant in Holland, Mich., funded in part by a $151 million U.S. Recovery Act grant.
Quote: "The transportation energy equation is being fundamentally rewritten to reduce and eventually eliminate our dependence on petroleum. If we do it right, we can avoid getting ourselves into an oil supply/demand crunch. It is somewhat analogous to refrigeration putting an end to wars that used to be fought over salt."