When Gary Jablonski was 16, cruising in his 1979 Mustang Cobra, he had no idea where the technology in his pony car would go in the coming years. But, oh, how far it has come.
The manager of infotainment product technology leads the team that has developed MyFord Touch®, a driver connect technology that presents a simple, intuitive way to interface with vehicles. By using configurable displays and direct voice commands, MyFord also can present multiple layers of information at the driver’s request, leading to immense power and configurability.
“MyFord represents our first opportunity to design a vehicle cockpit with SYNC® in mind,” explained Jablonski. He admits there is nothing he would rather be doing.
“There is probably nothing cooler than working on cars and trucks,” Jablonski said. “Cars are an emotional part of our culture – we can remember our first car, the car we drove on our first date and the car we took to college. While I’m sure that designing refrigerators is rewarding, I’ll stick with designing Mustangs.”
Along with loving the products he works on, Jablonski also finds motivation in his team.
“The best thing about this job is the team I get to work with,” he said. “They are, without a doubt, the most talented, creative and passionate group of electrical, software and system engineers in the automotive industry.”
It’s also important for Jablonski to be part of a company he respects, and that’s where the heritage of Ford Motor Company comes into play. Quite simply, he finds it unique to work for a corporation where the family name is still on the building and the family is still involved in the business. Ford is an integral part of American history and culture, he said.
Jablonski earned his bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from Northwestern University, a master’s in electrical engineering from Wayne State University and an MBA from the University of Michigan.
Challenges along the way
“Staying number one is my biggest challenge,” Jablonski said. “Our industry is more competitive than it has ever been, and we have everyone in the industry trying to take our infotainment leadership position.”
Jablonski and team will make sure that doesn’t happen, by making innovative product development, like MyFord driver connect technology, not a one-time event, but a habit.
Personal Insights and Fun Facts
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About Ford Motor Company
Ford Motor Company, a global automotive industry leader based in Dearborn, Mich., manufactures or distributes automobiles across six continents. With about 200,000 employees and about 90 plants worldwide, the company’s automotive brands include Ford, Lincoln, Mercury and Volvo. The company provides financial services through Ford Motor Credit Company. For more information regarding Ford’s products, please visit www.ford.com.
Jan. 7, 2010