In July, 2010, Wil James was appointed as President of Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Kentucky, Inc.
Mr. James came to the plant from the Indiana facility in Evansville, where he was Sr. Vice President for Manufacturing and quality since 2008. He came to the Indiana plant from Long Beach., Calif., where he was President of TABC, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Toyota Motor Engineering & Manufacturing North America, Inc. He joined TABC in January 2006 as Senior Vice President of Operations and was promoted to President in January 2007.
From 1987 to 2006 Mr. James was affiliated with Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Kentucky. His almost 20-year career with TMMK encompassed many career moves. He was named Vice President of Manufacturing in January 2003. As Vice President, Mr. James’ responsibilities included overseeing all vehicle manufacturing operations as well as Production Control. He was General Manager of Assembly, responsible for engineering, maintenance, production and internal parts conveyance for Kentucky’s two assembly lines, along with the Plastics organization. He was General Manager of Production Administration with responsibilities that included coordination of Production Support, Facilities, Environmental, Planning and Project Management.
He held positions of Production / Maintenance / Project Engineer at Olin Corp. before joining Toyota. He received his Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering Technology from Old Dominion University in 1978. He also holds an Associate’s degree in Applied Sciences from Old Dominion University, earned in 1976.
Mr. James serves as Toyota’s representative on the Board of Affiliates for the National Society of Black Engineers. He also is a member of the Board of Regents for Kentucky State University, Academic UpRise and Toyota’s diversity champion for TEMA. Mr. James also currently serves as chair for Lexington’s Arena Task force working closely with Mayor Jim Gray.
Past public service roles included the Board for the Urban League of Louisville, Ky., the Kentucky Humanities Council, and The Partnership for Youth Organizations. Mr. James is also an active member of The Executive Leadership Conference and Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity. Additional past affiliations include Chairman of the Board for Georgetown Municipal Water and Sewer Service and Toyota Federal Credit Union in addition to membership on the Board of North Carolina A&T School of Engineering.
Mr. James is a native of Norfolk, Va. He and his wife Michaelene reside in Lexington which places him close to two of his three daughters and their families.