LISA DRAKE: FORD GLOBAL CHIEF ENGINEER LEADS TEAM TOWARD LAUNCH OF ELECTRIC VEHICLES
Lisa Drake, chief engineer, Global Hybrid and Battery Electric Vehicle programs
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- Lisa Drake, 37, is chief engineer at Ford Motor Company responsible for leading the company’s Global Hybrid and Battery Electric Vehicle programs
- Drake takes pride being involved in Ford’s electrification process, with the first all-electric Transit Connect coming to market in late 2010, followed by the Focus Electric in 2011
- Drake credits teamwork at Ford for the success of Fusion Hybrid as well as the upcoming launch of the Transit Connect Electric
Ask Lisa Drake, chief engineer for Ford’s Global Hybrid and Battery Electric Vehicle programs, where she gets her knack for leadership and teamwork and she’ll tell you to come see her play at “center midfield.”
Drake, who oversees development of the Ford Transit Connect Electric for late 2010 and manages development of Focus Electric for 2011, has been playing soccer since she was 7. She started the women’s teams in the Ford Soccer Club and plays competitively throughout the year.
“As center midfielder, my job is to keep the defense and offense working together, and to create the passes for my teammates who ultimately score the goals,” Drake explained. “I find that playing center midfield is very much the same kind of job I do every day at Ford.”
Drake is energized by Ford’s recent decision to invest an additional $450 million in its electric vehicle plan, which includes not only electrified vehicles, but also battery system design and development.
“We have such a great depth of talent and experience in hybrid and electric vehicles at Ford, and this gives us confidence going forward,” Drake said. “Twenty-five years from now I can imagine being able to tell stories about how I was on the team that delivered some of the first electric vehicles for Ford in the 21st century.”
At the age of 37, Drake is one of the youngest chief engineers at Ford Motor Company, and a recipient of the prestigious Automotive Hall of Fame’s Young Leader and Excellence Award, which recognizes the achievements of today’s automotive innovators who have demonstrated significant potential as future industry leaders.
Personal Insights and Fun Facts
- Lisa was born and raised in Pittsburgh. She currently resides in Royal Oak, Mich.
- She earned a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering at Carnegie Mellon University, and an MBA from the University of Michigan
- Lisa is an active “high pointer,” a member of an informal group of enthusiasts who set out to climb the highest mountain in every state. To date, she has successfully reached the peak in 16 states, including Mount Hood in Oregon, which is approximately 11,245 feet
- With three decades of competitive soccer experience, Drake also recruits coaches for Special Olympics Soccer and referees the Michigan Special Olympics Tournament that takes place on her birthday weekend every year
- Lisa is engaged and “somehow trying to plan a wedding for this year while managing to launch several new electrified products!”
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About Ford Motor Company
Ford Motor Company, a global automotive industry leader based in Dearborn, Mich., manufactures or distributes automobiles across six continents. With about 198,000 employees and about 90 plants worldwide, the company’s automotive brands include Ford, Lincoln, Mercury and Volvo. The company provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company. For more information regarding Ford’s products, please visit www.ford.com .
March 31, 2010