Mitsubishi creates a new VP job, promotes O'Brien

CYPRESS, CA: Japanese automaker Mitsubishi Motors of America is restructuring its North American activities, and has promoted Gael O'Brien to a newly-created position, corporate communications VP.

CYPRESS, CA: Japanese automaker Mitsubishi Motors of America is restructuring its North American activities, and has promoted Gael O'Brien to a newly-created position, corporate communications VP.

CYPRESS, CA: Japanese automaker Mitsubishi Motors of America is restructuring its North American activities, and has promoted Gael O'Brien to a newly-created position, corporate communications VP.

Previously she headed PR for Mitsubishi's manufacturing subsidiary in Bloomington, IL and becomes only the second female to head an auto company's PR staff. Last spring, Debra Sanchez Fair was promoted to chief of Nissan's North American PR after her boss, VP Jason Vines, defected to Ford.

O'Brien has a staff of 12 to handle internal and external corporate communications, media relations, community relations and charitable giving - including Mitsubishi Motors, USA Foundation. The firm's PR efforts are backed up by Stanton-Crenshaw Communications as outside counsel, providing Mitsubishi's news bureau and a New York City presence. Stanton-Crenshaw won the account last year.

Mitsubishi includes a sales corporation headquartered in California, manufacturing activity in Illinois and research and development operations in Michigan, all under the developing umbrella of Mitsubishi Motors America.

O'Brien's relatively varied background seems well-suited to her new responsibilities.

She was headhunted into Mitsubishi's Illinois activity in 1996 to help defuse a sexual harassment suit brought by female factory employees.

Prior to that, she operated her own counseling agency in Columbus, OH, served as the first PR director for the Columbus office of Price Waterhouse and spent five years as top aide to a leading Ohio state senator.

Previously, she was employed as assistant editor of the Chronicle of Higher Education and as assistant to the president of Trinity College in Connecticut.

She holds a BA from Skidmore and an MA from William & Mary.





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