Desi Ujkashevic is currently the Global Director of Ford’s Global Automotive Safety Engineering Office. She has responsibility for all current and future program safety strategy (including Autonomous Vehicles), corporate rule-making, advanced strategy development, Field Service Actions, and Program Safety compliance. She currently also serves on the Board of Directors for the Intelligent Transportation Society (ITS) of America and the Transportation Improvement Association (TIA).
In her previous role, she was the Engineering Director for North American Vehicle Programs where she was responsible for Engineering for Car and Utility Programs managing engineering design deliverables including achievement of cost, profit, quality, and timing objectives. Prior to this, Desi was the Global Director, Interiors Engineering where she led the Strategy, Program execution, Quality and launch for Interiors on all Global Programs. Previous to this, Desi completed a 3-year international assignment in Germany, serving as Ford’s Director of Engineering for Body Systems and Design Operations. Desi has a wealth of global automotive industry leadership experience, driving Product, Quality, and Operational Excellence with a focus to enhance the Automotive Customer Experience and enable advanced technologies to deliver current and future mobility demands.
Ford Motor Company has recognized Desi with an Excellence in Leadership Award and a Diversity Executive Champion Award. In 2010 and 2015 Desi was named one of the top 100 Leading Women in the Auto Industry by the “Automotive News.” In 2011, Desi was featured by “dBusiness” as one of eight women recognized in “Powered by Detroit – Women”. Desi is very active in Ford’s STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics) Programs and regularly participates in many community outreach programs.
Desi joined Ford in 1991 as a Ford College Graduate in Product Development. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering, Masters of Science in Industrial and Systems Engineering and an MBA all from the University of Michigan. Desi is married with four children.