LONDON - Star journalist Gavin Green is proving adept at public relations. The former editor of Car Magazine has been appointed director of public and governmental affairs at Ford of Britain - just seven months after 'crossing the fence.'
Green, 43, edited Car for five years between 1987 and 1992 before becoming editor in chief of all automotive titles at EMAP Publishing PLC.
He also was motoring writer for the International Herald Tribune and the Independent newspaper in the United Kingdom before joining Ford in March.
Green's initial responsibility was for motor sports, including the automaker's Formula One and World Rally Championship involvement. He now reports directly to Mike Callaghan, executive director of public and governmental affairs, and son of former British Prime Minister James Callaghan.
Green, who retains his Australian passport 'because they are better at cricket,' said Ford has much to communicate. The agenda includes much better products with sharper designs, along with new brands, such as Volvo, 'and possible further acquisitions.'
He also admits there is some repair work to be done. 'There has been some negative PR following the problems with (the) Dagenham (plant) and that is something we have to address,' he said. 'But generally, everything is looking positive for the future.'
Green took up his new position in December. It is one of several top-level changes within the Ford of Europe public relations organization.
Jaguar communications and public affairs director Joe Greenwell is joining his old boss Nick Scheele as vice president for communications and public affairs for Ford of Europe. Scheele is head of Ford of Europe.
Greenwell, 48, joined Jaguar in 1983 as marketing research manager. He held senior management positions within both sales and marketing and public affairs before his appointment as director in January 1996.
After 17 years, Greenwell said he is looking forward to moving to the larger organization.
'There are common disciplines, but the scale will be completely different,' he said. 'Last year, Jaguar had a record year with 50,000 sales - that's about one-tenth of what Ford does in the U.K. alone.'
Greenwell is based in Cologne, Germany. He is commuting weekly between there and the family home in the U.K. Midlands. Greenwell said he recognizes the scope of his new job.
'At Jaguar you could see, feel and touch the extremities of the business, something which I will not be able to do with Ford of Europe, but the resources will be greater,' he said.
Greenwell's career began with Austin Morris in 1973. He also worked at Leyland International and BL Cars during the 1970s and 1980s.
Greenwell holds an honors degree in English and American history, earned at the University of East Anglia in England.
His replacement at Jaguar is 35-year-old Stuart Dyble, who was director of global marketing and manufacturing public affairs. Dyble has been based at Ford's world headquarters in Dearborn, Michigan.
Dyble joined Ford in 1994 as corporate communications manager. He has been promoted several times. An Austin Rover-sponsored graduate at the City University Business School in London, Dyble also worked as Toyota Motor Co. corporate communications manager between 1989 and 1994.