Featured Banquet Speaker

Raj Nair
Executive Vice President, Product Development, and Chief Technical Officer
Ford Motor Company

Raj Nair is Executive Vice President, Product Development, and Chief Technical Officer (CTO) at Ford Motor Company. In this role, he has global responsibility for all aspects of the company’s design, engineering, research, and product development. Since April 2012, he had been Group Vice President of Product Development and CTO.

Prior to 2012 as Vice President of Engineering for Product Development, Nair oversaw all engineering for car, truck, and SUV vehicles for the Ford and Lincoln brands, and was responsible for delivering on Ford’s commitment to offer more new products faster than ever before by leveraging greater sharing and reuse of platforms and components globally. He also helped lead the development and implementation of the Ford brand DNA.

Previously, Nair served for three years as Vice President, Operations, Asia Pacific, responsible for Product Development, Manufacturing, Purchasing, Quality and Information Technology.

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Featured Moderator

Rhonda Walker
Morning News Anchor, WDIV-TV 4 News Detroit; Founder and President, Rhonda Walker Foundation

Rhonda Walker began her broadcast career on WJBK-Fox 2 News Detroit and joined the WDIV-Local 4 news team in 2003 as the weekday morning news anchor. In 2007, she took a break from morning news and held a dual position as evening co-anchor and health reporter. Before this assignment, Walker also held the position of noon news anchor at Local 4 and hosted and produced “4 Your Children,” a segment focused on news important to both parents and children. In addition to her regular in-studio duties, Walker annually hosts special programming events such Local 4’s broadcasts of “America’s Thanksgiving Parade” and the North American International Auto Show Charity Preview.

Walker’s passion for inspiring children prompted her to establish the Rhonda Walker Foundation in 2003 to serve teen girls. In its eighth year, RWF supports inner-city teen girls from throughout the Detroit Public School System with its mission to empower inner-city teen girls toward becoming strong, confident, successful, and moral future leaders.

Walker is a Detroit native and earned a bachelor’s degree in communications from Michigan State University.

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