GM Names Dhivya Suryadevara as New CFO

Suryadevara's appointment to replace Chuck Stevens puts GM in an elite group of companies that have a woman in both the CEO and CFO roles.
Matthew HellerJune 13, 2018
GM Names Dhivya Suryadevara as New CFO

Another woman is moving into General Motors’ executive suite as the automaker on Wednesday named Dhivya Suryadevara as its new CFO, replacing Chuck Stevens, who is retiring.

Suryadevara’s appointment puts GM in an elite group of companies that have a woman in both the CEO and CFO roles. Women have been moving up the corporate ladder at GM since Mary Barra was appointed chief executive in 2014.

How Startup CFO Grew Food Company 50% YoY

How Startup CFO Grew Food Company 50% YoY

This case study of JonnyPops’ success highlights the unusual financial and operational strategies that enabled rapid expansion into a crowded and highly competitive frozen treat market. 

Suryadevara, 39, has served as vice president, Corporate Finance, at GM since July 2017, playing a key role in GM’s divestiture of Opel, acquisition of Cruise, investment in Lyft, and more recently, SoftBank’s investment in GM Cruise.

“Dhivya’s experience and leadership in several key roles throughout our financial operations positions her well to build on the strong business results we’ve delivered over the last several years,” Barra said in a news release.

Stevens, 58, is stepping down after 4-1/2 years as CFO during which, as Forbes reports, “He has been a key member of Barra’s senior leadership team, along with President Dan Ammann, as GM simultaneously shed unprofitable businesses while investing for growth in new technologies like electric vehicles and autonomy.”

He will remain with the company as an advisor until his retirement in March 2019.

Dhivya Suryadevara

“Chuck has played a crucial role in driving profitable growth across the enterprise for the last several years, as well as being a vital part of the development and execution of all aspects of the core and future business strategies for the company,” Barra said.

With Suryadevara’s appointment to succeed Stevens, four of GM’s 17 corporate officers will be female, including Barra, global manufacturing chief Alicia Boler-Davis, and global human resources chief Kimberly Brycz.

According to Catalyst, which tracks women in leadership positions, females currently have a 27% share of senior jobs among S&P 500 companies.

From 2015 to 2017, Suryadevara served as vice president, Finance and Treasurer, at GM, with responsibility for everything from capital planning to worldwide banking. She has a bachelor’s and master’s degree in commerce from the University of Madras in India and an MBA from Harvard Business School.