Will be replaced by Michael Simcoe

Following a long and illustrious career, Ed Welburn has announced he will retire from his position as vice president of General Motors Global Design on July 1st.

Welburn has spent over four decades with the automaker and has played a key role in designing some of the company's most celebrated concepts and production models.  Originally starting out as an intern in 1971, Welburn quickly advanced up the corporate ladder and eventually become General Motor's top designer in 2005.

In a statement, GM CEO Mary Barra praised Welburn by saying "GM Design is among the most respected and sought-after organizations in the industry because of Ed’s leadership. He nurtured a creative, inclusive, and customer-focused culture among our designers that has strengthened our global brands."

Welburn will be replaced by Michael Simcoe who is currently serving as vice president of GM International Design and has spent 33 years with the company. His name might not ring a bell outside the industry but General Motors says Simcoe played an important role in the development of models such as the Buick LaCrosse, Chevrolet Camaro, and Cadillac CTS.  He will begin transitioning into his new role on May 1st before fully taking over after Welburn's retirement.

Gallery: Ed Welburn