GM's new VP of government relations is no stranger to Washington

WASHINGTON: General Motors, the world's largest industrial

corporation, has hired veteran Washington insider Ken Cole as its VP of

government relations.

Cole replaces Andrew Card, who became White House chief of staff when

George W. Bush took office.

Formerly VP of government relations for Honeywell International, Cole

previously held that title from 1983 to 1999 at AlliedSignal, a major

automotive supplier. He was noted for his expertise in international

trade issues, and became Honeywell's top Washington representative when

Honeywell and AlliedSignal merged in 1999.

Like his predecessor, Cole, a University of Texas graduate and lawyer,

has long-term ties to the Bush family, dating back to his involvement

with George H. W. Bush's unsuccessful 1980 campaign for the Republican

Presidential nomination.

In his new capacity, Cole leads a team of 24 staffers based primarily in

Washington, DC and Detroit. His direct reports include Debbie Dingell,

executive director of Washington and community affairs, and J. Edward

Berry, director of state and local government relations. Dingell, wife

of Rep. John Dingell (D-MI), is also vice chairwoman of the GM


Until GM hired Card away from the American Auto-mobile Manufacturers

Association (AAMA) in 1998, it had traditionally filled its Washington

VP slot with GM insiders. In Cole, it now has a combination of

automotive, global, and Washington savvy, along with Bush administration


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