About Those Volt Pictures: So Where's Denise?

September 8, 2008
Volt-mania is real, and GM is riding it hard. The “leak” of a treasure trove of production Volt pictures is generating zillions of page-views right now—including a whole bunch here, since we broke the story. GM seems to be denying it, but the fact that the pix just popped up on an RSS feed is widely assumed to be the work of their (very savvy) Web PR folks.

But we just got an e-mail that made us scratch our heads a little: "So why did they have half a dozen badly dressed, slightly overweight, older white guys pose in front of the car, but not Denise [Gray]? This is a company that still doesn't get it."

Who’s Denise Gray? Oh, only GM’s battery czar, the woman who’s responsible for getting the Volt’s battery pack tested, certified, and delivered on time so it will, you know, actually run. And she’s a fascinating story all by herself: If you had to picture the person in that job, would you see an African-American woman electrical engineer from the public schools of Detroit? Nah, didn’t think so.

There are two possible explanations, and we’ll wait for GM to tell us which one is right. First, there were more photos than the ones we grabbed. Second, Gray isn’t technically a member of the Volt “product team” and those were the only execs they photographed.

Either way, we think she should have been there, especially after looking at portraits of her in the Spectrum story linked above. Because, let’s face it, folks: Denise Gray is by far the best-looking member of that team.

In all seriousness, GM: where’s Denise?--John Voelcker

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