GM CEO Mary Barra to meet with Ivanka Trump on Wednesday

White House Senior Adviser Ivanka Trump introduces her father U.S. President Donald Trump to deliver his acceptance speech as the 2020 Republican presidential nominee during the final event of the Republican National Convention on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, August 27, 2020.

Kevin Lamarque | Reuters

DETROIT – General Motors CEO Mary Barra is scheduled to meet Wednesday with White House adviser Ivanka Trump at the automaker’s design and tech center in suburban Detroit.

Barra will give President Donald Trump’s daughter a tour of GM’s Technical Learning University, which recently completed a $2 million upgrade for employee training, according to GM spokeswoman Jeannine Ginivan.

Barra invited Ivanka Trump to tour the facility last year as part of GM’s partnership in the White House’s advertising campaign that urges those who are jobless or unhappy with their current positions to “Find Something New,” Ginivan said.

White House spokeswoman Carolina Hurley, in a tweet, said Trump and Barra will meet with apprentices and employees and learn more about GM’s leading earn-while-you-learn programs.

“The President built the strongest economy in our lifetime and he will do it again. Prioritizing the American worker and their family is the top priority, and I’m proud to visit General Motors’ Technical Learning University, where workers are learning on-the-job while earning a paycheck,” Ivanka Trump said in a statement. “Detroit, GM, and the talented GM workforce are ensuring the great American comeback is underway and I’m looking forward to seeing it firsthand.”

U.S. Vice President Mike Pence and CEO of General Motors Mary Barra visit the General Motors Components Holding Plant that is manufacturing ventilators for use during the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Kokomo, Indiana.

Chris Bergin | Reuters

The GM program is based on an initiative that began in 2017, focused on improving the technical ability of the automaker’s skilled trade workers and salaried manufacturing engineers. Since its inception, GM has has trained more than 300 employees. The automaker expects to train 3,600 employees by the end of 2023.

Ivanka Trump is at least the third high profile official with the Trump administration to visit a GM facility in recent months as the president campaigns to be re-elected. Donald Trump has regularly touted the support of blue-collar auto workers as a reason for his win in Michigan in 2016. 

In April, Vice President Mike Pence visited a GM facility in Kokomo, Indiana that was building ventilators for the national stockpile.

Secretary of Energy Dan Brouillette also visited the automaker’s design and tech campus in July to announce $139 million in federal funding to support new and innovative advanced vehicle technologies.

Secretary of Energy Dan Brouillette (left) tours General Motors’ battery lab with GM Executive Director of Global Electrification and Battery Systems Kent Helfrich on July 16, 2020 at the GM Global Technical Center in Warren, Michigan.


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