Ford Motor Company’s Bill Ford is no longer chairman of the automaker’s board of directors, but he’s still running the show.
The automaker’s board voted last week to amend Ford’s bylaws to “adopt gender-neutral language throughout, including the title ‘chair’ in place of ‘chairman,’” according to a recent regulatory filing.
Bill Ford’s new title is simply “chair.”
The changes, which took effect immediately, are a pretty big step for the historically male-dominated auto industry. They come after large swaths of corporate America have promised employees and investors that they will be more inclusive and focus on diversity efforts following social unrest in the wake of the #MeToo movement and George Floyd’s murder last year.
“Our roles at Ford aren’t gender exclusive and these changes help limit ambiguity and contribute to the inclusive and equitable culture we’re creating,” Ford spokeswoman Marisa Bradley said in an emailed statement.
A spokesman for General Motors said Monday it removed the “chairman” title from CEO Mary Barra in exchange for “chair” in May. He said GM did not change its bylaws but made the changes internally and to the company’s website.