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Obama lauds GM CEO Barra in State of Union address

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(Crain News Service photo)
Mary Barra

Crain News Service report

WASHINGTON (Jan, 29, 2014) — In his State of the Union address, President Barack Obama cited new General Motors Co. CEO Mary Barra as an example of those who strengthen America by realizing their dreams through hard work.

"That's what drew our forebears here," he said in his address last night. "It's how the daughter of a factory worker is CEO of America's largest auto maker," he added, as television cameras focused on Ms. Barra, attending as a guest of first lady Michelle Obama.

Ms. Barra, 52, became the first CEO of a global auto maker when she succeeded the retiring Dan Akerson two weeks ago. In the early 1980s, she landed her first job as a plant engineer at GM's Pontiac Motor Division, where her father worked as a die maker for nearly four decades.

Mr. Obama directly followed his nod to Ms. Barra with references to political rival John Boehner and himself.

It's "how the son of a barkeeper is speaker of the house," Mr. Obama continued, turning to a thumbs-up from the Ohio Republican seated behind him. It's "how the son of a single mom can be president of the greatest nation on Earth."

This report appeared on the website of Automotive News, a Detroit-based sister publication of Tire Business.

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