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GM'S FLETCHER AND WHITTAKER TO RECEIVE BLACK ENGINEER OF THE YEAR AWARDS

GM'S FLETCHER AND WHITTAKER TO RECEIVE BLACK ENGINEER OF THE YEAR AWARDS
 DETROIT, Feb. 27 /PRNewswire/ -- Recipients of the Sixth Annual Black Engineer of the Year Awards will include two representatives from General Motors Corporation (NYSE: GM), the automaker announced.
 Milton E. Fletcher, manager, personnel placement and equal employment opportunity, Technical Staffs Personnel, and David R. Whittaker, chief engineer, body systems for GM's Saturn Corporation, will be among 16 individuals who will be honored during the Black Engineer of the Year Awards Conference on Feb. 29, 1992, in Baltimore.
 The Black Engineer of the Year Awards were created to pay tribute to black engineers, scientists and technology leaders, whose contributions best exemplify innovation, hard work and achievement in 15 categories including engineering, science, business, education, affirmative action and community service. General Motors will be one of the event's major corporate sponsors.
 The recipient of the Affirmative Action in Industry Award, Fletcher has served as mentor and model for hundreds of young African-Americans in and outside the realm of GM. A graduate of Southeastern Louisiana University, Fletcher began his career with General Motors in 1973 as a process engineer. After serving as a labor relations representative for four years for GM's former Detroit Diesel Allison Division, he rose through the company ranks from personnel staff assistant to supervisor of human resources management and equal employment opportunity; from supervisor of salaried personnel administration to his present position as manager of personnel placement and EEO for the company's Technical Staffs Group.
 Equally impressive is Fletcher's commitment to helping young African-Americans build their own careers. In 1988 he co-founded the General Motors Black Collegian Conference, an annual gathering which brings together more than 400 minority interns, cooperative students, scholars and fellows working at GM to network and address issues pertinent to setting and pursuing professional goals. To date, the conference has facilitated the career development of more than 2,000 students. Fletcher also serves as the company's key liaison to the National Consortium for Graduate Degrees for Minorities in Engineering and Science, Inc. (GEM), and as the university relations team coordinator for Southern University, an institution which ranks in the top 20 nationwide of schools which provide graduates to GM.
 In congratulating Fletcher on his award, Gary W. Dickinson, vice president and group executive in charge of the Technical Staffs Group said: "Milt manages our technical recruiting effort with a strong personal and professional commitment to affirmative action. General Motors has greatly benefited from Milt's resourcefulness in recruiting highly qualified African-American engineering graduates."
 Cited for his outstanding technical contributions, Whittaker has spent his entire career with GM. A cooperative student sponsored by the company's Advanced Product Engineering group, he graduated from the General Motors Institute in Flint, Mich., in 1974 and was assigned to the Advanced Engineering Staff as an associate engineer. Eight years later, he was promoted to project design engineer, responsible for body structure analysis and the development of design proposals, and in 1983, to staff project engineer responsible for front end structure engineering for Project Saturn.
 Whittaker was one of the first engineers to be recruited to work at Saturn in 1985. It was a steady stream of accomplishments, such as the development of award-winning polymer body panels, modal analysis techniques and lightweight vehicle structures, which helped to move him into Saturn's executive suite. As chief engineer for body systems and components, Whittaker is responsible for the integration of engineering functions, including the management of design and engineering of body structure, spaceframe, doors, body components, glass and molding and sealing systems. He also oversees the administration activities of 10 product engineering groups and 168 employees.
 In addition to his duties at Saturn, Whittaker is active in a number of professional and community service activities. He has encouraged young African-Americans across the country to pursue careers in engineering through the Society of Automotive Engineers. In 1990, he and his wife Barbara were presented with the Troy, Mich., YMCA's Minority Achievers Award for leadership and outstanding service.
 "Saturn is honored to have an outstanding engineer like David Whittaker recognized by such a reputable organization," said Richard G. "Skip" LeFauve, Saturn's president. "This award is not only a recognition of Dave's talents and contributions to the industry but also his contributions in making Saturn a world-class, quality vehicle."
 The General Motors Corporation has demonstrated a long-standing commitment to providing equal opportunities to all minorities. In 1991, minorities represented 22.2 percent of total salaried employment and 15.1 percent of total hourly employment. Twenty-five percent of all college graduates hired into GM's salaried work force last year were minorities, and 27 students received three-year grants of $9,000 to attend historically black colleges and universities under the GM "Engineering Excellence Awards Program."
 -0- 2/27/92
 /CONTACT: Mary Roznowski of General Motors, 313-986-5717; or Necole Merritt of Saturn, 313-528-5981/
 (GM) CO: General Motors Corporation ST: Michigan IN: AUT SU:


JG -- DE018 -- 3203 02/27/92 11:06 EST
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Date:Feb 27, 1992
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