Susan Smyth is the Chief Scientist for Global Manufacturing at General Motors and the Director of the GM R&D Manufacturing Systems Research Lab. In this capacity, she directs the creation of GM's global advanced manufacturing strategies and oversees innovation and implementation of GM's advanced manufacturing portfolio. Susan is recognized as one of GM's key strategic technology leaders inside and outside General Motors.
She is Chair of the Technology Leadership Council for Manufacturing at the United States Council for Automotive Research (the preeminent American organization for pre-competitive automotive technology), the GM Executive Representative for Environmental Technology at USCAR. Member of Northwestern's MMM Executive governance Council (Kellogg School of Management). Executive Advisor to the Tennenbaum Institute, Executive advisor for the Georgia Tech. Manufacturing Institute., Director of Collaborative Research Laboratories at University of Michigan, MIT and Shanghai Jiao-Tong University, China and International Director for the Executive Board of the Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME).
In her role as Chief Manufacturing Scientist, and Director of Manufacturing R&D, Susan is responsible for Virtual Manufacturing, forming and joining technologies for light-weighting, and plant floor system optimization. In addition, she is responsible for developing manufacturing technologies for vehicle electrification ranging from motors to batteries on programs such as the Chevrolet Volt.
She leads the GM R&D efforts for flexible automation and robotics (e.g., GM-NASA Robonaut initiative) with a focus on vehicle manufacturing applications.
She has aggressively grown GM's global collaboration footprint in the US, Europe, Israel, Korea, and China. These collaborations have yielded internal and external recognitions. Susan's teams have garnered an unprecedented number of internal GM Corporate innovation Awards and external recognition such as the 2009 and 2010 Korean President's Award for Technology; the 2009 Award for Outstanding Regional partnership by the Federal Laboratory consortium for Technology transfer and the 2010 NASA group achievement award.
Susan began her career with General Motors as a Senior Project Engineer with the Advanced Engineering staff. Since then she has held a variety of leadership positions in Manufacturing, Quality, Strategic business planning and R&D.
She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Physics, Masters of Science in Optoelectronics and Information Technology, and a PhD in Physics, from the Queen's University of Belfast, Northern Ireland.
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