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GM announces new CEO and chairman

General Motors has today announced that Edward E. Whitacre, Jr. will step down as chief executive officer on September 1 and as chairman of the board by the end of the year.

Dan Akerson (61) who has served on the GM board of directors since July 2009, will become CEO on September 1 and chairman by the end of the year,

Earlier today, GM reported its second consecutive quarter of profits after a string of losses dating back to 2007.

"My goal in coming to General Motors was to help restore profitability, build a strong market position, and position this iconic company for success,” said Whitacre. “We are clearly on that path. A strong foundation is in place and I am comfortable with the timing of my decision.”

Whitacre (68) joined GM as chairman of the board on July 10, 2009. On December 1 he was named chief executive officer.

He led the company after it emerged from bankruptcy to become a profitable automaker again.

In addition to serving on the GM board since July 2009, Akerson has had a career in finance as a managing director at the Carlyle Group and in telecommunication, serving as chairman and chief executive officer of XO Communications and at Nextel Communications. He was also chairman and CEO of General Instrument Corp.

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