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Join Inforum and AutomotiveNEXT


Detroit is the world’s largest cluster, and the heart, of the automotive industry. With over 375 research and development centers and $12 billion in vehicle-related R&D spend in Michigan, the Detroit area accounts for nearly 25 percent of the United States’ entire motor vehicle industry.

AutomotiveNEXT is an industry group of Inforum that focuses on attracting, developing and retaining top female talent in the automotive industry. We do this by positioning women thought leaders, promoting an exciting and diverse image  of the industry to university students, and providing a supportive and challenging environment for women at different career stages.
While there are prominent women executives in automotive, the numbers show those women are virtually alone within the industry. Only 3.3% of executive positions in the automotive industry are filled by women. Read more

Inforum industry groups like AutomotiveNEXT bring together the top minds in an industry or field. Members are the subject-matter experts and practitioners who collaborate on industry issues and market trends, bringing forth new ideas and sharing best practices.  Industry groups are a benefit of membership.

Click here to join AutomotiveNEXT industry group (for Inforum members only).


Not a member of Inforum yet? Click here to join Inforum today!




January 15th, 2015


Presented By

Immediately following the NAIAS Breakfast, Inforum’s AutomotiveNEXT industry group hosts AutomotiveNEXT 1:1 – an event that brings together women university students, young professionals, and top executives to explore a range of careers in the automotive industry. AutomotiveNEXT 1:1 features high-touch networking and small-group conversation. Get accessto influential leaders – and get inspiredby the possibilities.

for NAIAS Breakfast and AutomotiveNEXT1:1



AutomotiveNEXT Summer Intern Gathering July 16, 2014

Join us for an evening of camaraderie and conversation with women executives in the automotive industry. Begin to build your professional network before you graduate by meeting industry professionals and fellow interns from OEMs, suppliers, and businesses integral to automotive. 

Hear from Ford Motor Company’s “Futurist”Sheryl Connelly on the exciting trends that are driving dramatic innovations and changing consumer dynamics across the globe.

Tour Yazaki’s 3D Lab and see how additive manufacturing has revolutionized the design development stage of the engineering process.

Get access to influential leaders – and get inspired by the possibilities. 



Date: Wednesday, July 16, 2014
Time: 6:00 - 8:00 p.m.
Place: Yazaki North America 6801 Haggerty Road Canton, MI 48187

This gathering is complimentary for Inforum members, guests and summer interns of AutomotiveNEXT. Registration is required.



 Follow @InforumMI and use #InforumAutoNEXT to join the conversation with fellow automotive interns.  Watch for questions leading up to the event.




Autoline After Hours on Electrifying Ford with Ford's Nancy Gioia

Feb. 6, 2014

Ford Motor Company's Nancy Gioia, director of Global Electrification, User Interface & Connectivity, is making a return appearance on Autoline After Hours with host John McElroy for a live webcast on Thursday, Feb. 6 at 6 p.m. ET.  Nancy serves on the Inforum board of directors and is chair of AutomotiveNEXT. 

Gioia will share an insider's view on cutting-edge technology in hybrid programs, sustainable mobility and electrifying Ford Motor Company.



Ford's Nancy Gioia and Bosch's Max Straub on Autoline This Week

Mar. 24, 2013

Autoline This Week with host John McElroy featured the topic of women in automotive and highlights AutomotiveNEXT, an industry group of Inforum that brings together subject-matter experts and practitioners who collaborate on automotive industry issues, share best practices, network with each other, and bring forth new ideas.

This segment underscored the clear purpose of AutomotiveNEXT: to optimize the contribution of women in the automotive industry and make sure the industry gets its fair share of today’s and tomorrow’s talent. One way to do that is to ensure the talent pool reflects more women -- from new recruits, to emerging leaders and women at all stages of their career.

Leading the conversation were:

  • Nancy Gioia, director, global electrification, user interface & connectivity at Ford Motor Company. Nancy serves on the Inforum board of directors and is chair of AutomotiveNEXT.

  • Maximiliane Straub, chief financial officer and executive vice president, controlling, finance and administration, Robert Bosch, LLC. Max serves on the Inforum and Inforum Center for Leadership boards of directors and is a member of the AutomotiveNEXT steering committe.
  • Laree Gardner, undergraduate student, Wayne State University College of Engineering. Laree is in her third year.
  • Alicia Luzkow, graduate student, Michigan State University MBA program with an emphasis in marketing & strategic management. Alicia is graduating in May 2013.

Thi program aired on Sunday, March 24, 2013 on Detroit Public TV and is archived here on



Chrysler Exec Chris Barman Talks AutomotiveNEXT in USA Today

Feb. 15, 2013

Chris Barman, vehicle line executive for the C and D segment programs, was featured in USA Today and gave a nice plug to Inforum's AutomotiveNEXT industry group. The article explains that female engineers are having an increasingly big impact on the vehicles and safety features that Detroit is offering -- despite the stubbornly small numbers in all industries. The Society of Automotive Engineers reports that among its nearly 28,000 members, 1500 -- 5% -- are women. Thank you, Chris, for your leadership and tremendous support of Inforum! Click here to read the article.




Colleen Haley, Executive Vice President and President, US OEM Business Unit,
Yazaki North America, Inc.

Nancy Gioia, Director, Global Electrification, User Interface & Connectivity, Ford Motor Co.

Upcoming Events

4/2/15 | Thursday | Southwest Michigan
4/16/15 | Thursday | West Michigan
4/21/15 | Tuesday | Mid Michigan