GM Appoints Mary Barra In Carmaker's Top Job
General Motors has confirmed its global product development chief Mary Barra is to become the first woman to lead a major US carmaker.
The company said chief executive officer Dan Akerson would step down next month and be replaced by Ms Barra.
The announcement comes a day after the US Treasury said it had sold the last of its GM bailout shares.
At one point the US government owned 61% of the vehicle firm.
US taxpayers lost around $10bn of the investment in the share sale on Monday.
The company said that Mr Akerson, who is also the chairman, would leave on January 15, pulling his planned departure ahead by several months.
His wife was recently diagnosed with an advanced stage of cancer.
Ms Barra, 51, GM's executive vice president for global product development, purchasing and supply chain, was elected by the board as the next CEO and will become a director.
The firm said Theodore Solso, 66, will succeed 65-year-old Mr Akerson as chairman.
Mr Akerson was appointed CEO just before GM re-entered public markets on November 2010, following its $49.5bn (£30bn) government bailout and bankruptcy reorganisation.
Speculation on his exit gained steam last April, when GM disclosed in a securities filing that his compensation plan had changed.
The CEO did not receive any restricted stock units last year "in acknowledgement of the possibility of his retirement before the completion of the three-year vesting period," which would be in 2015.
Shares in GM were down fractionally in early trading on Tuesday.
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