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Olivet College to host Karla Middlebrooks April 5
Apr 03, 2013

Olivet College is hosting a luncheon featuring Karla Middlebrooks, Contributing Partner for Excellence in Action, Friday, April 5 at 11:45 a.m. in the Oaks Dining Room. Middlebrooks will deliver a presentation titled “Bloom Where you are Planted” at the event, which is free and open to the public.

Prior to joining Excellence in Action, Middlebrooks served as Vice President, Operations Finance for the Chrysler Corporation until 2008. With financial management responsibilities at Chrysler covering the financial forecasting, budgeting and controlling for Product Development, Procurement & Supply, Manufacturing, and Information Technology, Middlebrooks had financial oversight over 70 percent of the total cost base of the company and all capital expenditures. She successfully led more than 150 employees with a departmental budget of approximately $10 million and reported directly to the Chief Financial Officer. Over the course of her 24-year career with Chrysler, Middlebrooks held increasing levels of responsibility and leadership within the Finance and Controlling organization, starting as an entry level financial analyst in 1984.

As Vice President of Corporate Finance for DaimlerChrysler Financial Services, she led the Finance team responsible for realigning financial reporting and presenting Chrysler Financial Services data to internal and external parties including Cerberus Capital Management, national rating agencies and Wall Street firms. Middlebrooks was the first African American woman within Chrysler promoted to the director level within finance.

With her poised, insightful, and confident coaching style, Middlebrooks utilizes her 24 years of professional experience to inspire people. When coaching, she leads people to discover their inner strength so as to maximize their professional leadership presence within an organization and realize their full potential.

Over her professional career Middlebrooks has received a number of awards and recognition for excellence. But the two awards that are very personal and most meaningful to her are the 2004 Career Achievement Award from the National Women of Color in Technology and a 2000 Eagle Award from the National Eagle Leadership Institute.

Middlebrooks graduated from Northwestern University with a bachelor’s degree in Industrial Engineering and earned a master’s degree in Business Administration from the Harvard Business School. She has served on the boards of local non-profit organizations including the Northwest Guidance Clinic, The Roeper School, and the Girl Scouts of Southeastern Michigan.

Middlebrooks is married to William Middlebrooks, vice chair of the Olivet College Board of Trustees. The couple has two sons.

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