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General Motors Co. said Friday it has named John K. Blanchard, director of local government relations for the U.S. since 2011, to immediately serve as its lead executive for GM’s initiatives in Detroit and Southeast Michigan. He will serve as the company’s single point contact in GM’s efforts to help revitalize Detroit.

Blanchard, 52, represents GM on many boards including the Detroit Riverfront Conservancy, Detroit Economic Growth Corp., Automation Alley and will be recommended to serve as GM’s representative to the Downtown Detroit Partnership.

“As a life-long resident of Michigan, John understands Detroit well,” Bob Ferguson, senior vice president for GM’s global public policy, said in a statement. “Having John lead our efforts will ensure the company has an even greater impact in helping rebuild Detroit.”

Blanchard has worked for GM since 1983, joining the company as a financial analyst. He has worked in GM’s corporate finance division, led the company’s worldwide real estate group and helped oversee redevelopment of GM’s headquarters at the Renaissance Center.

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