Government and mobility technology leader appointed to take reigns of smart city test center
The American Center for Mobility (ACM) today announced that Reuben Sarkar has been selected as president and chief executive officer (CEO) following a national executive search. Sarkar will oversee the strategic direction of the award-winning smart city test center, work with the board of directors to accelerate the center’s ongoing development in the areas of mobility technology testing, standards, research and education and engage with government and mobility industry stakeholders.
“The board has full confidence that Reuben is the ideal leader for ACM as it continues to build strong partnerships and expand its capabilities and utilization,” said Cynthia Wilbanks, vice president of government relations, University of Michigan and chair of the ACM board of directors. “Reuben brings proven leadership and experience in business growth, coupled with technical and innovative capabilities and a passion for the mobility industry that ACM is designed to serve and partner with as we look to the future.”
ACM has gained year-over-year revenue increases and continues to be recognized globally as a leading connected and autonomous vehicle technology test center. New developments include the groundbreaking of the ACM technology park and planned construction of an event product showcase venue giving vehicle and technology companies new ways to integrate into the mobility ecosystem and further demonstrate the capabilities of their innovations. Earlier this year, AT&T renewed its investment and commitment as a technology partner to ACM by signing an additional three-year agreement through 2023 and committing to add into the ACM infrastructure a dedicated 5G Sub-6Ghz network for advanced research and testing capabilities at the facility. Interim CEO Mark Chaput, who was appointed by the board of directors in November 2019, has supported these ongoing activities. Effective May 4, 2020, Mark will transition oversight of the organization to Sarkar, retaining his role as Chief Operating Officer.
“The American Center for Mobility contributes tremendously to our mobility ecosystem here in Michigan,” said Mark A. Burton, CEO of the Michigan Economic Development Corporation. “Reuben’s experience working with startups and navigating public policy serves as a strong foundation for his leadership at ACM as we make every effort to ensure Michigan remains the go-to state to build, test, and deploy the vehicles and transportation systems of the future.”
Paul Krutko, Ann Arbor SPARK president and CEO, adds, “ACM continues to be a critical asset in our economic development strategy. It anchors the eastern part of our county, it’s proof positive that this region is the mobility capital of the world, and it’s a place where the next generation of mobility technologies can be validated to go to market. ACM has already shown the ability to drive new investments, with partner investors such as Subaru who continue buildout of their $48.2 million technical research facility within just a few miles’ radius of ACM. Reuben’s hire ensures this continued growth of our innovation and mobility ecosystem regionally, recognizable around the world.”
“It is without a doubt ACM is positioned to make great strides for the mobility industry,” says Sarkar, “and having worked at a variety of organizations at all levels of the industry I believe I have the experience to help align the organization in a way that further propels ACM as the catalyst of mobility evolution and innovation.”
Reuben joins the ACM team from Forge Nano, a corporate venture-backed start-up, where he served as the Chief Product Officer. Notably, Reuben also worked for the U.S.Department of Energy, Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) where he served as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Transportation, while earlier on in his career, he worked at the former General Motors plant that once stood on ACM’s historic site in Willow Run. Reuben is a native to Michigan graduating from the University of Michigan with degrees in both Chemical Engineering and an MBA from the Ross Business School.
About American Center for Mobility
American Center for Mobility is a collaborative effort comprised of government, industry and academic organizations focused on accelerating the mobility industry through research, testing, standards development, and educational programming. Located in Southeast Michigan on over 500-acres at the historic Willow Run site, the ACM offers a smart city test center providing a safe platform for the integration and testing of emerging vehicle and mobility technologies, a technology park for the co-location of mobility companies and an event center for showcasing connected and autonomous vehicle technologies and convening industry activities. For more information, visit acmwillowrun.org.