Cox Automotive Names Janet Barnard as Chief People Officer


Janet Barnard

Cox Automotive names Janet Barnard as chief people officer following the retirement of longtime human resources leader Rock Anderson. In response to Barnard's shift in responsibilities, the company selects Grace Huang to oversee Inventory Solutions, including brands such as Manheim, Ready Logistics and RMS Automotive.

"Janet's leadership style and passion for developing people are exactly what we need to further integrate Cox Automotive teams," said Sandy Schwartz, president, Cox Automotive. "Her creativity, operational expertise and outstanding industry reputation will help us solidify our place as a destination for top talent."

In her new role, Barnard will develop the global organization's high-performance culture and talent management program to support its vision to transform the automotive industry. She will follow Anderson's lead, continuing to promote career opportunities and policies that advocate diversity and inclusion.

During the past three years, Barnard served as president of the company's Inventory Solutions group. She led the transformation of its core vehicle auction business to incorporate an expanding digital and mobile strategy, a $400 million multi-year auction modernization effort and the roll-out of an end-to-end inventory solutions strategy. Prior to joining Cox Automotive, Barnard worked at Cox Communications in positions of increasing responsibility and leadership.

Grace Huang to Lead Inventory Solutions Business

Grace Huang will succeed Barnard as president of Cox Automotive Inventory Solutions. In her new role, Huang will lead six brands that enable automotive dealers to turn inventory faster and smarter by connecting with physical auction sites, 24/7 buying and selling platforms, plus logistics and risk management services. In addition, her efforts will strengthen Cox Automotive's position as a key player in the vehicle mobility sector that is rewriting the rules of car ownership.

"Grace is the right leader to take on this important position as she's been instrumental in the growth of Inventory Solutions," said Mark O'Neil, chief operating officer, Cox Automotive. "She is a strategic thinker with an outstanding track record for executing initiatives that enhance our operations, team member engagement and client success."

Previously, Huang served as senior vice president, Manheim Inventory Services, and was responsible for auction operations, digital services and the execution of an enhanced auction model designed to deliver greater efficiencies to better serve clients. She also led the creation of a vehicle services strategy that positions Manheim as the integration point for numerous Cox Automotive brands.

In addition to her recent role, for more than 10 years, Huang managed strategic initiatives across the Cox family of companies. She served as vice president of Enterprise Product Planning for Cox Automotive and held senior director roles in Corporate Development at Cox Enterprises and Corporate Strategy for Cox Media Group.

Barnard and Huang start Oct. 2 in their new roles and report to Schwartz and O'Neil, respectively.

About Cox Automotive 

Cox Automotive Inc. is transforming the way the world buys, sells and owns cars with industry-leading digital marketing, software, financial, wholesale and e-commerce solutions for consumers, dealers, manufacturers and the overall automotive ecosystem worldwide. Committed to open choice and dedicated to strong partnerships, the Cox Automotive family includes Autotrader®,®, Dealertrack®, Kelley Blue Book®, Manheim®, NextGear Capital®, vAuto®, Xtime® and a host of other brands. The global company has 33,000 team members in more than 200 locations and is partner to more than 40,000 auto dealers, as well as most major automobile manufacturers, while engaging U.S. consumer car buyers with the most recognized media brands in the industry. Cox Automotive is a subsidiary of Cox Enterprises Inc., an Atlanta-based company with revenues exceeding $20 billion and approximately 60,000 employees. Cox Enterprises' other major operating subsidiaries include Cox Communications and Cox Media Group. For more information about Cox Automotive, visit

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