.

Ralph Gilles

Wikicars, a place to share your automotive knowledge
Jump to: navigation, search

Ralph V. Gilles, born on January 14, 1970 in New York, NY, is an Haitian-American automobile designer. Currently the President and CEO of the Dodge Car Brand and Senior Vice President of Design at Chrysler Group LLC[1], Gilles styled the 2005 Chrysler 300 — after joining Chrysler in 1992.

Gilles has been passionate about cars since the age of 6 and began drawing concept vehicles by the age of 8. When Gilles was 14, an aunt (Giselle Mouscardy) noticed he was talented at sketching cars and wrote to former Chrysler Chairman Lee Iacocca to inform him of her nephew's talents. A reply came from K. Neil Walling, Chrysler's design chief at the time, suggesting Gilles attend one of three design schools. He attended the College for Creative Studies in Detroit, Michigan. In 2002, Gilles received an Executive MBA from Michigan State University. In August, 2008, Gilles replaced the now retired Trevor Creed as Senior Vice President of Design. In October 2009, Gilles was promoted to President and CEO of the Dodge Car Brand [2]. <ref name="wsj1">Template:Citation/core{{#if:|}}</ref>

Previously, he was named Vice President – Design on Sept. 1, 2008. Since first joining the former Chrysler Corporation in 1992 as a designer, Gilles has put his extensive academic background in industrial design and business administration to use, holding various positions within the company, including:

-2009, President and Chief Executive Officer, Dodge Car Brand, and Senior Vice President – Product Design, Chrysler Group LLC

-2009, Senior Vice President – Product Design

-2008, Vice President – Design, Chrysler LLC

-2006, Vice President – Jeep®/Truck, Color and Trim Studios, and Specialty Vehicles, Chrysler Group, DaimlerChrysler

-2005, Director – Truck Exterior/Interior Design Studio

-2001, Director – Design Office, Large Car Studio, Family Vehicles

-1999, Senior Manager – Design Office, Studio 3

-1998, Manager – Design Office, Jeep Interiors, Chrysler Corporation

-1992, Designer – Design Office

Gilles is extremely active inside and outside of Chrysler Group LLC. He serves as the executive sponsor of the Chrysler African American Network (CAAN) in addition to playing a leading role with The Chrysler Global Diversity Council. He also serves on the boards of The Walter P. Chrysler Museum in Auburn Hills, Mich. and The Pontiac Osteopathic Hospital Regional Medical Center in Pontiac, Mich. At his alma mater, The College for Creative Studies (CCS) in Detroit, Gilles serves on The advisory board of The School of Industrial Design and on The CCS Capital Committee [3].

An avid car enthusiast who enjoys spending time at the track, go-karting and watching Formula 1 auto racing, Gilles has participated in the Targa Newfoundland Rally and the Car and Driver One Lap of America. In addition, he has frequently served as a judge at Pebble Beach, Meadow Brook and Cranbrook Concours events, along with the EyesOn Design car show [4].

Gilles has earned numerous academic and industry awards, including: The Michigan State University Eli Broad Graduate School of Management Young Alumni Achievement Award, The Automotive Hall of Fame Young Leadership & Excellence Award, NV Magazine Innovation Award, Black Engineer of the Year President’s Award and N’Digo Foundation N’Design Award [5].

He holds a Master of Business Administration degree from Michigan State University (2002) and a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in industrial design from CCS (1992) [6].

Gilles was born in New York City [7].