As an international trade attorney, it’s Claire Reichstein’s job to make sure Ford Motor Co.’s cars and trucks can be sold in Mexico, China and countries around the world.
That job has become a lot tougher since President Donald Trump has shaken up global markets by imposing tariffs, pulling out of trade deals and threatening to rip up decades-old pacts.
“The biggest challenge in my job right now is the unpredictability in the environment,” she said.
“That’s exciting in a lot of spaces. If you’re in tech, unpredictability isn’t necessarily a bad thing. In law, with all the changes happening in international trade, it’s difficult to develop a cogent strategy. There’s not enough predictability.”
Reichstein came to Ford last July after stints at Fiat Chrysler Automobiles and General Motors.
She graduated from the University of California, Davis law school in 2008 after earning a business degree in economics from DePaul University.
She said she’s always wanted to work in the automotive business because of the vast amount of trade that occurs on a daily basis.
“Ever since I was a child, I was absolutely fascinated with things and people moving across international borders,” she said.
“I always knew I wanted to work in this space and knew what type of lawyer I wanted to be.”
Reichstein said she wanted to work for Ford because she was impressed with the company’s mindset of moving fast to adapt to all the changes happening to transportation, a tenet of CEO Jim Hackett’s first year in charge of the automaker.
“Technology is moving faster than the law,” she said.
“I’m hopeful lawyers will play a role here as well, when we’re ultimately tasked with helping these companies move these new ideas and products into new markets.”
-- Michael Martinez