March 31, 1998
KALAMAZOO -- General Motors executive and Western Michigan University graduate Roy S. Roberts will present the first Business Leadership Lecture in WMU's Haworth College of Business Thursday, April 9.
Roberts, who is vice president of the General Motors Corp. and general manager of the Pontiac-GMC Division, will speak at 7 p.m. in the Brown Auditorium of Schneider Hall. The topic of his free public address will be "Capturing a World of Opportunities."
Roberts is expected to discuss the skills, knowledge and attitude that GM believes is important for success in the people it is hiring as it plans for the 21st century.
The Business Leadership Lectures are designed to provide opportunities for Haworth College of Business students to invite business leaders to campus to discuss issues of importance for their future careers, according to Dr. James W. Schmotter, dean of the college. Roberts was identified by the leaders of student organizations in the college. After this inaugural year, the annual series will be coordinated by Phi Chi Theta business fraternity.
Roberts earned his bachelor of business administration degree from WMU in 1970 while working full time at the Lear-Siegler Corp. in Grand Rapids. He joined GM in 1977 as a salaried employee-in-training at the former Diesel Equipment Division in Grand Rapids. He become plant manager of the Grand Rapids Plant #1 in 1981.
He advanced through the ranks at GM and, in 1987, was elected a vice president. He left GM to become a vice president at the Navistar International Corp. in 1988, but returned to the company in 1990. He was named general manager of the GMC Division in 1992 and given the responsibility to merge the Pontiac-GMC Division in 1996.
Roberts is a former member of the WMU Board of Trustees and received WMU's Distinguished Alumni Award in 1995.
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