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Flex chief engineer finds product development success close to home


BOULDER, Colo.– It’s a good thing Ron Heiser, Ford Flex chief engineer, has stayed pretty close to home.

“I always wanted to work for Ford,” said Heiser. “I was born in Detroit and raised in Dearborn Heights. My father was a Ford/UAW electrician. Cars and airplanes were always interesting for me. Years ago, I saw a Ford commercial showing smoke pass over a vehicle, testing for aerodynamic drag. That led me to aerospace studies during my undergrad at the University of Michigan. While I’ve never worked in the wind tunnel, product development allows me to work closely with our vehicle aerodynamics team.”

Heiser continued on to earn a Master of Business Administration, also from the University of Michigan, before beginning at Ford in 1991.

Prior to Flex, Heiser worked on a variety of engineering assignments and vehicle lines.

Among his contributions, he is most proud of piloting the extensive use of production tooled parts in early prototype builds. Reliance on digital technologies to design, refine and execute hard-tooled, production-ready parts provides huge engineering and financial efficiencies.

“It’s a thrill to go from concept to reality, pulling together highly motivated, cross-functional teams to design and produce the best possible products for our customers,” added Heiser.

Heiser takes a local approach in his off-hours as well.

“Michigan is a wonderful place,” he said with a broad smile. “There are lakes – both large and small – and sports for every season. My wife also grew up in the Detroit area. Our families are close by and we all get together often. We have a son and a daughter, both not quite teenagers, so my personal passion is being the best dad that I can be.”


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