David Fernandes has been named the new president of Toyota Mississippi in Blue Springs.

He will be the fifth president of the plant, which was announced in 2007, and following a delay brought on by the Great Recession, produced its first Corolla sedan in October 2011.

Fernandes, who currently is in his second year as senior vice president of manufacturing at Toyota South Africa Motors, will begin his new role in Blue Springs on Jan. 4.

Fernandes, 51, will be responsible for all manufacturing and administration functions and report to Brian Krinock, senior vice president, vehicle manufacturing, Toyota Motor North America.

Before his South Africa assignment, Fernandes was president of Toyota Motor Manufacturing Alabama and had a variety of roles within TMNA’s Manufacturing and Production Engineering groups. He began his Toyota career in 1998 as a group leader at the company’s West Virginia plant.

Fernandes will be a familiar face for some at Toyota Mississippi. He worked alongside Emily Lauder, the vice president of administration at Toyota Mississippi, at the West Virginia plant, as well at the Alabama facility.

Current Toyota Mississippi president, Sean Suggs will remain in his role until Fernandes comes aboard in January. Suggs will then assume full responsibilities as group vice president, Social Innovation based in Plano, Texas, which was announced in July.

Toyota Mississippi, which employs more than 2,000 employees, has assembled more than 1.3 million of the world’s best-selling car.


Twitter: @dennisseid

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