PROVO, UT - Raser Technologies Inc., an energy technology company, said it has hired four former General Motors executives to lead Raser's plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) program for fleet trucks.
The new team will initially focus on building demonstration plug-in extended-range electric trucks, including two to be delivered to Pacific Gas and Electric Co. (PG&E) as part of an agreement between Raser and PG&E.
Leading the new team is David J. Stenson as chief of operations for Raser's transportation division. Stenson will report directly to Raser Chairman Kraig Higginson.
Raser also hired former GM executives Nicholas Zielinski, Joseph R. Katona and William G. Shikany. All four new executives will be based in Detroit.
"We are excited to make the announcement and welcome these very talented senior engineers and executives to the Raser team," said Higginson. "These men have an impressive background in the automotive industry and proven track records for getting things done."
Stenson brings 29 years of automotive experience with GM, where he held several key positions including chief technical officer of Hummer, executive director of global engineering design and release, chief engineer of GM de Mexico and vehicle line director for Pontiac Solstice.
Stenson attended the cooperative college education program of General Motors Institute (now Kettering University) from 1981-1986, receiving his BSME. After two more years in advanced engineering, he attended Harvard Business School, receiving his MBA in 1990.
Zielinski has more than 36 years of experience in General Motors product development, with 30 years in chassis systems and powertrain integration. Zielinski was assigned as vehicle chief engineer for advanced system integration in 2004 and was responsible for advanced hybrid propulsion system vehicle integration for several projects, including the Chevrolet Volt and Equinox Fuel Cell. Zielinski will be Raser's chief engineer for electric vehicle programs.
Katona has more than 36 years of experience in GM product development with assignments in interior, exterior engineering, structural durability testing and design studio engineering. Most recently he served as director of vehicle architecture. Katona will be Raser's director of engineering validation, build and test.
Shikany was with GM for over 34 years in a variety of engineering areas -- from engine testing and design to exterior and interior components. Most recently, he was GM's global technical lead director for restraint systems. Shikany will be Raser's director of vehicle engineering operations.
James Spellman, vice president of engineering at Raser, directed the successful development of the Electric H3. He will continue leading the component R&D efforts for Raser out of the Utah Engineering Center.
"We have focused our development efforts in trucks and SUVs and continue to see a growing demand for fuel-efficient vehicles among companies with large fleets of trucks, such as utility and government fleets," Higginson noted. "Our new team of veteran automotive experts will complement our R&D team here in Utah, and will be key to moving Raser's electric powertrain technology to market."