TECH

GM Cruise Hires Former Apple Automotive Executive as Director of Autonomous Vehicle Safety

Steve Kenner [Kodiak]

Former Apple executive linked to Apple Car joins General Motors Cruise, becoming boss unmanned taxi divisions.

Steve Kenner became chief safety officer for GM's self-driving vehicle division on Monday, the company said. The move makes Kenner head of security for the auto company's self-driving car division.

This is not Kenner's first security position, as he has previously worked in the same field in other places. His most previous position was as vice president of security at Kodiak, a self-driving truck company.

Kenner previously worked for other large companies, including Uber, Aurora and Apple. While at Apple, he was an executive in charge of safety and regulatory affairs for the Special Projects Group, a division that was reportedly developing the long-rumored Apple Car.

At some point in 2018, Kenner, as Apple's director of product integrity, spoke with the California Department of Motor Vehicles to discuss Apple's self-driving car program. In 2016, he wrote a letter to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration on behalf of Apple, proposing policy updates to help companies test self-driving cars on public roads.

After leaving Apple, Kenner joined Uber's advanced technology group and then took a position at Kodiak.

This is not Kenner's first job at GM, as he began his career at the automaker as an engineer.

“Safety requires every team within the company to work together with the safety of passengers and other road users first,” Kenner said in a statement about the job change. “This partnership needs to involve regulators, and I hope to earn their trust.”

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