Motiv Appoints New CEO With 38 Years’ Experience at Ford


Motiv Power Systems, a provider of solutions to electrify medium-duty commercial vehicles, has announced Matt O’Leary as its new CEO.

In addition to serving as Motiv’s chairman of the board and board member for more than two years, O’Leary previously spent 38 years at Ford Motor Co., including, most recently, as vehicle line director for trucks, SUVs and commercial vehicles in North America.

Jim Castelaz, founder and former CEO, has assumed the role of chief technology officer and will maintain a seat on Motiv’s board. O’Leary will continue to serve as interim board chairman and plans to relocate to the San Francisco Bay Area, Motiv’s base, in the coming weeks.

“This transition is really a natural byproduct of the tremendous market success that Motiv has experienced and the future growth plans we are putting in place,” says O’Leary. “The number of recent key partner and supplier agreements Motiv has secured over the past year, including sales to USPS and a strategic partnership with Winnebago, as well as a BMW lithium-ion battery supply agreement, demonstrate that the company has matured and now offers an opportunity to better leverage Jim’s incredible technical talent in expanding our technology offerings with innovations to further cement our competitive advantage.”

“It was always my hope that we would reach a point in Motiv’s evolution where I could focus on the aspect of Motiv that excites me the most – and that’s the development and deployment of our key technology and our growing ability to ‘free fleets from fossil fuels,'” says Castelaz.

During his career at Ford, O’Leary co-led the launch of the aluminum-intensive 2015 F150 at two assembly plants. As director of corporate strategy, he led the development of a strategy to significantly grow Ford’s presence in the Asia Pacific region. As director of product development for South America, O’Leary led the transformation of Ford South America from 100% legacy to 100% global products in three years, including local design and development of two global vehicles – EcoSport and Ka.

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