Introducing Bruce McDonald, AADA CEO

Following 28 years with Ford Motor Company, along with other successful career pursuits, AADA is proud to appoint Bruce McDonald as its new CEO

Bruce McDonald has established himself as an automotive industry leader both in Australia and on a global scale.

His enviable resume highlights an enthusiasm for Australia’s automotive industry, and a track record of leadership that’s defined by integrity. It’s for these reasons and more that AADA is thrilled to welcome Bruce as its first permanent CEO, following Patrick Tessier who will hand over the reins from his interim position.

Bruce, who will officially commence as CEO on July 1, is the ideal candidate for the role and will no doubt help the Association achieve important objectives, including stronger bonds between OEMs and Dealers.

This is something that Bruce has a particular interest in.

‘I strongly hold the view that Dealers and their franchisors can only achieve maximum mutual benefit through an enduring partnership’ Bruce said.

‘I have always had a strong admiration of the risk taken by Dealers who invest in an auto franchise, as well as their right to earn an acceptable return on their investment.’

As part of his extensive career, Bruce enjoyed 28 successful years with Ford Motor Company here in Australia, as well as several key roles in the USA and various projects in Asia-Pacific markets.

In the mid-90s he was posted to Ford World Headquarters in Detroit where he conducted extensive brand-strategy training, plus a Dealer-facing role in Ford Division, before taking on the opportunity to run the New York Ford Division Regional Office.

By the turn of the century, Bruce was back down under, as Vice President of Marketing and Sales for Ford Australia.

During his five years in the role, Bruce helped significantly strengthen the relationship between Ford and the national Dealer network. He also oversaw the launch of the iconic Ford Territory in 2004, which was an exceptional success at the time.

Bruce’s final role with Ford was Vice President, Ford Customer Service Division, with its inherent focus on Dealers’ fixed operations.

In this role, he was appointed to further reinvigorate the Dealer network relationship, improve employee engagement and drive profit – all objectives he helped achieve despite a difficult period for the company, including a contracting brand image and sales.

In the period since his Ford career concluded in late 2008, Bruce has successfully run his own consulting business focusing on four key elements of business success: inspirational leadership, differentiated strategy, engaged employees and delighted customers.

As the new CEO of AADA, Bruce will use his experience, industry understanding and connections to help foster and protect Dealer interests.

‘The appointment of Bruce McDonald is an exciting step forward for the Association,’ said AADA Chairman Ian Field.

‘Not only is Bruce equipped with formidable industry knowledge, but his OEM background will help the AADA continue to balance the relationship between Dealers and manufacturers. We need an open and collaborative working relationship with OEMs to forge ahead and Bruce will help facilitate this.’

Bruce has also acknowledged the opportunity to work with the newly formed Australian Motor Dealer Council:

‘Whilst the AADA charter differs from that of the AMDC, my respect for its Independent Chairman, Doug Dickson will no doubt help contribute to our collaborative success.’

As Bruce is welcomed into the role of CEO, the AADA is simultaneously congratulating interim CEO Patrick Tessier on a job well done.

‘Patrick has achieved what he set out to do’ said AADA Chairman Ian Field.

‘Without Patrick’s involvement, it would have been impossible to establish the current AADA in as quick and effective a manner as we have over the past 12 months’ he said.

Patrick’s involvement in the auto industry stretches over 30 years, and whilst he will no longer oversee the AADA as CEO, he will return to his long-standing roles as Convention Director and International Relations Advisor.
Patrick will also help facilitate the success of NADA University in Australia.

‘It has been an honour to serve Australia’s Dealers and be a part of AADA’s re-creation,’ Mr Tessier said. ‘We’ve achieved so much in a short amount of time and I am particularly proud of the strong relationships that have been formed with our sister Associations here and abroad.’

With strong foundations now in place, the appointment of a permanent CEO for AADA will help the Association continue to achieve great outcomes for Dealers across the country.

‘Patrick has done a commendable job in helping establish the revitalised AADA. Now, with the appointment of Bruce McDonald we anticipate a bright future for the Association and our members moving forward’ said Mr Field.

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