Honored execs hit it big after Detroit 3 jobs
Dauch: Rift with Iacocca
Twenty years ago, Dick Dauch and Lewis Campbell were a couple of former Big 3 executives who had missed their chance to become CEO. They didn't seem like future Hall of Famers, but in the past two decades good things have happened to lots of executives who left Detroit automakers at mid-career.
Dauch wanted to become Chrysler's CEO, but left in 1991 after falling out with Lee Iacocca. Campbell had been on a very fast track at General Motors, but went to Textron as an executive vice president in late 1992 after running GMC Truck. He had failed to advance in a management overhaul that year that elevated Rick Wagoner and others.
But there was life after the Big 3 for both -- underscored by the fact that the magazine Industry Week has just named Dauch, 70, and Campbell, 66, to its Manufacturing Hall of Fame.
In 1993, Dauch co-founded American Axle as part of an investment group that acquired five GM plants. Indeed, he was a manufacturing whiz well before American Axle. Industry Week noted "if Dick Dauch had stopped working at 50, he would have had a legendary career."
At 30, he was Chevrolet Division's youngest plant manager and was in charge of VW's short-lived Westmoreland, Pa., plant before becoming a key member of Iacocca's Chrysler salvage operation in the 1980s.
Campbell: Ran GMC Truck
The magazine said: "Dauch spearheaded changes in production, included rolling model changes and applied statistical process control, that improved quality and made the launch of the first minivan in 1983 a huge success."
Campbell became Textron's CEO in 1998 and retired in 2009, only to be lured out of retirement in August 2012 to become CEO of Navistar. Industry Week said that under Campbell, Textron "restructured the company to take advantage of common processes and shared services."