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A year after hiring dozens of researchers from Carnegie Mellon University for its autonomous car research program, Uber Technologies Inc. has turned to Ford Motor Co. for its latest hire.

The ride-hailing service on Thursday confirmed it’s hired Sherif Marakby as the vice president of global vehicle programs. Uber said he will oversee manufacturer strategy and integration efforts at the Advanced Technologies Center in Pittsburgh.

Marakby was previously Ford’s director of global electrical and electronic systems engineering.

“Self-driving technology is a hard challenge to solve with enormous potential to improve people’s lives,” Brian McClendon, Uber’s vice president of advanced technologies, said in a statement. Sherif is a world expert and we’re excited to have him join the team.”

Marakby, a University of Michigan graduate, worked at Ford in a number of different roles, including chief engineer of the Escape, chief engineer of hybrid core technology and director of powertrain engineering for Ford of Europe.

“Over one million people die in car accidents every year — in the U.S. it’s the most common cause of death amongst young people,” Marakby said in a statement. “Self-driving technology can help prevent these tragedies as well as improve the quality of life in cities. It’s one of the many reasons I am so excited to join Uber’s team in Pittsburgh.”

Uber has been testing autonomous car technology at its Advanced Technologies Center since last year, and its test cars have been driving around downtown Pittsburgh since May.

The company advertises for positions ranging from research scientists to mechanical engineers on its website.

mmartinez@detroitnews.com

(313) 222-2401

Twitter.com/MikeMartinez_DN

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