Philip Caldwell

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Philip Caldwell (born January 27, 1920, in Bourneville, Ohio), as the first person to run the Ford Motor Company who was not a member of the Ford family, orchestrated one of the most dramatically successful turnarounds in business history.

Philip Caldwell's parents are Robert Clyde Caldwell (1882 – 1935), a farmer, and Wilhelmina Hemphill (1881 – 1966). He grew up in South Charleston, Ohio.

Caldwell is a 1940 graduate of Muskingum College where he majored in economics and was a member of the school's championship debate team. In 1942 he earned a Master of Business Administration degree from Harvard University.

Starting at Ford in 1953, he successively headed truck operations, the Philco division, and international operations; in the last of these positions he introduced the Ford Fiesta into Europe.

Following the firing of Lee Iacocca in 1978, Caldwell became president of Ford. On October 1, 1979, Henry Ford II retired as CEO and as Chairman of the Board of Directors in 1980; Caldwell succeeded him in each position.

As Chairman of the Board and CEO Caldwell approved and oversaw the development and launch of the Ford Taurus (and its corporate sister the Mercury Sable) which were introduced to the media days before his retirement, thus allowing him to take public credit for the Taurus program, which became one of the biggest successes in automobile business history.

On February 1, 1985, Caldwell retired from Ford and later accepted a position as senior managing director at Shearson Lehman Brothers in New York. On September 23, 1985, he was one of 21 new members appointed to the President's Export Council.

Business positions
Preceded by
Henry Ford II
Chief Executive Officer of the Ford Motor Company
1980 — 1985
Succeeded by
Donald Petersen