Jed Connelly, Nissan's U.S. sales boss, will retire from the automaker rather than move from Los Angeles to Nashville, Tenn., Nissan said Wednesday. His retirement takes effect July 1.
Connelly will remain a consultant with Nissan until Oct. 1, company spokeswoman Frederique Le Greves said.
Brad Bradshaw, who was named Nissan Division vice president and general manager last October, will step into Connelly's position as senior vice president of sales and marketing for Nissan North America Inc. In that position, Bradshaw will oversee both Nissan and Infiniti brands.
Nissan also said that Jim Morton, its senior vice president for administration and finance, in Gardena, Calif., will take the new title of vice chairman for North America.
Dominique Thormann, Nissan Europe's senior vice president for administration and finance, will step into Morton's senior vice president position in North America.
They will assume their new positions July 1.
As recently as February, Connelly, 60, indicated that he was planning to stay with Nissan as it moves its North American sales and marketing headquarters to Nashville this year. In conversation during last month's National Automobile Dealers Association convention in Orlando, Fla., Connelly said he and his wife had just found a new house in the Nashville area.
Connelly took over Nissan Division's sales during the automaker's troubled financial days in the 1990s. He helped assure U.S. retailers that Nissan's U.S. fortunes would change for the better in time as corporate profitability was restored in Japan.
He was promoted to take over the company's overall North American sales and marketing effort during Nissan's global reorganization under CEO Carlos Ghosn.
During Connelly's tenure, combined Nissan and Infiniti sales have increased 50 percent in the United States.
Connelly's decision to part with Nissan is the second major blow in a month to the automaker. Last month, Nissan's influential product planning executive, Jack Collins, also said he will leave the company.
Nissan says that most of its executives have committed to remain with the automaker as it relocates.
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