Ford – like most major corporations – certainly faces its fair share of legal challenges on a daily basis, with the most recent and perhaps complex relating to its future BlueOval Battery Park Michigan site. There, the automaker will build lithium-iron phosphate batteries using technology licensed from China-based battery maker CATL, which has prompted lots of questions, an inquiry, and criticism from select lawmakers, to the point where CEO Jim Farley recently traveled to Washington to discuss this matter in person. Now, however, The Blue Oval has hired someone with a lot of experience dealing with the U.S. government – multiple-time chief of staff Jessica Carter, according to Automotive News.
Carter has been named Ford’s new head of U.S. federal government affairs, which will be her first position in the automotive realm as she replaces Laura Dove in that capacity. Carter spent the last 25 years serving as the chief of staff for five different members of Congress, but will now tackle a host of important issues for Ford – including the controversy surrounding BlueOval Battery Park Michigan, tax credits and forthcoming guidance related to the in the Inflation Reduction Act, and various other matters.
“We know that we’re playing a bit of catch-up with China, but Ford is strongly positioned to win,” she said. “This is an American company, and I would never bet against an American company.” “Jessica’s substantial experience and deep relationships on Capitol Hill will help Ford identify, navigate, and advance policy, from securing global supply chains to supporting homegrown advanced technology research and American manufacturing jobs,” said Chris Smith, Ford’s chief government affairs officer, who Carter will report to. “Our country and our industry are at a pivotal crossroads in the transition to the connected, zero-emissions transportation future, and Jessica is exceptionally well-prepared to help fulfill our shared interests.”
“Welcome, Jessica! Jessica Carter brings a wealth of Capitol Hill experience to Ford’s Government Affairs team,” said Ford’s chief policy officer and general counsel Steven Croley. “I look forward to working with her to advance our key policy objectives, advancing American manufacturing and securing our supply chains for the vehicles of the future.”