Outstanding Leadership Awardee
Matthew J. Simoncini
Matthew J. Simoncini is president, chief executive officer and a director of Lear Corporation, effective September 1, 2011. In this role, Simoncini is responsible for the strategic direction and operational leadership of the company.
Formerly, Simoncini was senior vice president and chief financial officer of Lear Corporation, a role he had held since September 2007. As SVP and CFO, he was responsible for Lear's global finance operations, including external financial reporting, corporate business planning & analysis, corporate strategy and business development as well as information technology activities worldwide.
In August 2006, he was named senior vice president of global finance and chief accounting officer where he was responsible for Lear's worldwide operational finance, accounting and financial reporting. Prior to that, he was vice president of global finance, a position he had held since June 2004.
Simoncini also served as Lear's vice president of finance for Europe as well as holding the vice president of finance position for Lear's Electrical & Electronics business and DaimlerChrysler division. Simoncini joined Lear (from United Technologies Automotive) in April 1996 as director of finance for the Motors Division with responsibility for the financial activities of the business unit. At the time of Lear's acquisition of UTA, Simoncini was director of financial planning & analysis. Previous to UTA, Simoncini held financial and manufacturing positions with Varity Kelsey Hayes and Horizon Enterprises including chief financial officer of Kelsey Hayes' European Operations. Simoncini began his career at Touche Ross and is a certified public accountant.
Born and raised in Detroit, Simoncini earned a bachelor's degree from Wayne State University. In addition to his responsibilities at Lear, he is a member of the board of directors for the Wayne State University Foundation, Detroit Economic Club, Business Leaders of Michigan, Michigan Opera Theatre, Downtown Detroit Partnership, Bing Youth Institute and the Detroit Mayor's Workforce Development Board.
Please join us on October 29 as Matt Simoncini receives the Yeshiva's highest citation,the Outstanding Leadership Award.
Jim Hackett is president and chief executive officer, Ford Motor Company, effective May 22, 2017. He also is a member of the company’s board of directors.
Under Hackett’s leadership, together with Bill Ford, Ford is strengthening its automotive business and accelerating a strategic shift to capitalize on opportunities during a transformative period for the auto industry and the broader mobility space.
Prior to serving in this role, Hackett was chairman of Ford Smart Mobility LLC, a subsidiary of Ford formed to accelerate the company’s plans to design, build, grow and invest in emerging mobility services. He was named to the position March 10, 2016.
Before joining Ford Smart Mobility, Hackett was a member of the Ford Motor Company Board of Directors starting in 2013. As a member of the Sustainability and Innovation committee, he was actively involved with the Ford senior leadership team in launching the company’s Ford Smart Mobility plan. He also served on the Audit and the Nominating and Governance committees.
Hackett was vice chairman of Steelcase, the global leader in the office furniture industry, from 2014 to 2015. He retired as CEO of Steelcase in February 2014, after having spent 20 years leading the Grand Rapids-based office furniture company.
As a consumer-focused visionary in the office furniture industry, Hackett is credited with guiding Steelcase to becoming a global leader. During his 30 years there, he helped transform the office furniture company from traditional manufacturer to industry innovator. Having spent his career focused on the evolving needs of consumers, Hackett is recognized for predicting that the office landscape would shift away from cubicles to an open space environment, giving employees the flexibility to work where they want.
Hackett is well known for his creative management approach to business. Through an equity investment by Steelcase in IDEO, an international consulting firm, Hackett forged a unique business relationship with its CEO David Kelley to foster design innovation at the office furniture company. At that time in 1996, IDEO specialized in the design of a number of consumer products, office equipment, medical instrumentation, furniture and computers including design of the first “mouse” for early Apple computers.
He was interim director of athletics at the University of Michigan from Oct. 31, 2014 to March 11, 2016 where he led the search for a permanent athletic director appointed in January 2016. He played center on the University of Michigan football team prior to graduating from the university with a bachelor’s degree in Finance in 1977.
US Senator Cory Booker
Cory Booker received his undergraduate degree from Stanford University where he played on the varsity football team. While at Stanford, he also was awarded a Rhodes Scholarship and went on to study at the University of Oxford where he received an honors degree in History. Booker then completed his education at Yale Law School, receiving his J.D. in 1997.
At the age of twenty-nine, Booker was elected to the Newark City Council from the city’s Central Ward. Starting in 2006, Booker proudly served as Newark’s mayor for more than seven years. During his tenure, the city entered its largest period of economic growth since the 1960s. In addition, overall crime declined and the quality of life for residents improved due to initiatives such as more affordable housing, new green spaces and parks, increased educational opportunities, and more efficient city services.
On October 16th, 2013, Booker won a special election to represent New Jersey in the United States Senate. On November 4th, 2014, Senator Booker was re-elected to a full six year term. As New Jersey’s junior Senator, Cory Booker has brought an innovative and bipartisan approach to tackling some of the most difficult problems facing New Jersey and our country.
Booker serves on the Senate’s committees on Foreign Relations; Commerce, Science, and Transportation; Small Business and Entrepreneurship; and Environment and Public Works. He is the ranking member of the Senate Subcommittee on Surface Transportation, the Senate panel responsible for overseeing Amtrak and passenger rail in the U.S.