New leader named for Toyota’s engine plant in Huntsville

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Toyota's engine plant in Huntsville employs nearly 1,500 people. (Photo Courtesy: Toyota)

Toyota’s engine plant in Huntsville employs nearly 1,500 people. (Photo Courtesy: Toyota)

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. – Toyota Motor North America has announced a new president for its Huntsville engine plant.  On January 3, 2017, current plant Vice President David Fernandes will take over the helm.

The plant employs nearly 1,500 people.

David Fernandes (Photo Courtesy: Toyota)

David Fernandes (Photo Courtesy: Toyota)

Fernandes joined Toyota in 1998 as a group leader at the company’s West Virginia manufacturing facility. From there, he rose through the ranks and was promoted to help lead production engineering at Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing North America followed by a general manager assignment at Toyota Kentucky.  In January 2016, Fernandes was tapped to become the vice president at Toyota Alabama.

“I am grateful and humbled for the opportunity to lead Toyota Alabama as president,” said Fernandes. “Since joining this team earlier this year I have seen first-hand the commitment our workforce makes to meet customer demands while focusing on quality and safety. I look forward to the coming year and transitioning into the new role.”

Jim Bolte (Photo Courtesy: Toyota)

Jim Bolte (Photo Courtesy: Toyota)

Jim Bolte is the current Toyota Alabama President and has been named as a TMNA group vice president of manufacturing efficiency. In this role he is responsible for working with Toyota’s 15 North American manufacturing sites to improve overall efficiency and competitiveness. Bolte joined the engine plant
in 2003 as vice president and became the plant’s first American president in 2009. Under his participation and leadership, the plant expanded four times to become the only Toyota engine plant globally to build 4-cylinder, V6 and V8 engines under one roof.

“It has been my sincere honor and privilege to serve as president of Toyota Alabama. The continued growth and development of this plant is a direct result of our team members’ hard work and dedication,” said Bolte. “The ongoing support we’ve received from community partners and elected officials has also created an environment for our plant to thrive. It has been an amazing journey.”

Bolte has also served the community in many roles.  His current and past board activities supporting local organizations include the University of Alabama
Huntsville Foundation, National Children’s Advocacy Center, HudsonAlpha Foundation, Economic Development Partnership of Alabama, Greenpower USA, National Science Foundation, Business Council of Alabama, The Committee of 100, Past Chair of the Huntsville/Madison County Chamber of Commerce, and Alabama Robotics Technology Park.

Toyota Alabama celebrated its 15-year anniversary in 2016 including four expansions and investments totaling $864 million since groundbreaking. Production of the plant’s five millionth engine is scheduled for February 2017.