Saturday, July 2, 2016

Airing This Month: GM’s First Black Car Designer Who Generated Billions Of Dollars For The Auto Giant Talks “Auto Trends with” For One Year Anniversary Show

Welburn with one of his prized bankruptcy vehicles, the Corvette.

Ed Welburn is to General Motors what Johnny Ives is to Apple. That is Apple Computers. Johnny Ives, like Ed Welburn, is the creative force behind his company, designing products that keep customers coming back. Welburn, who retired on July 1, after breaking ever glass ceiling in his successful 44-year career, recently served as the global chief design leader at one of the world's largest automakers. 

Welburn was the first person at General Motors to rise to this position, making him the most influential black person in the auto industry.

Welburn, who was also the first black car designer to be hired by General Motors and the second to be working in the industry, has literally been responsible for generating billions of dollars for the automaker due to his creative designs, vision and quiet, but highly effective leadership style.

Two of the highest ranking Black Americans in their field, Ed Welburn, (l) and President Obama, (r) are touring the Washington Auto Show.

Welburn with one of Caddy's concept vehicles.

In a rare and candid radio interview, the creative genius goes one-on-one with auto enthusiast Jeff Fortson, the host of “Auto Trends with” for his show’s one year anniversary.

In our two-part interview, the Howard University graduate reflects on his career highs and lows, while being both a trendsetter and a pioneer in the auto industry. We cover a range of topics, discussing everything from the personal influence a recent cultural icon who passed away had on him to the one major career concern his parents refrained from sharing to the leadership move he made to push his design team through the dark days of the automaker’s impending bankruptcy to the private moment he shared with President Obama that literally put the Secret Service on alert. Moreover, during our conversation, Welburn speaks truthfully about the real driving factor behind some of General Motors' hits and misses -- in terms of car designs.

Furthermore, several individuals who have been directly impacted by Welburn share their thoughts about the game changing design leader throughout the show. Surprisingly, our listeners will be familiar with the work of many of the individuals paying tribute. 

Welburn with the Fine Arts graduates, after speaking at his alma mater, Howard University. 

Fortson says, "For a car nut like me, who spent many of weekends, as a kid, dragging my folks to the toy store, looking for the latest miniature Hot Wheels and Matchbox cars to add to my collection, I couldn’t have ever imagined that one day I would have an opportunity to talk to a pioneering car designer like Welburn. He not only looks like me, but it’s obvious his social conscience is keen in him. What an honor to have him kickoff my one year anniversary radio show, being that Mr. Welburn is at the top of his game in the design field."  

                                Saturday, July 9 and 16 (Show One)

Saturday, July 23 and 30 (Show Two)

Phoenix’s 1280-AM (Online --Desktop/Laptop)

3:15 p.m. EDT/12:15 p.m. PDT

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