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General Motors CEO Mary Barra to Kick Off 21st World Congress on Intelligent Transport Systems in Detroit, Michigan, this September

The Intelligent Transportation Society of America (ITS America) today announces that General Motors CEO Mary Barra will kick off the 21st World Congress on Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS) on Sunday, September 7, in Detroit, Michigan, with an opening keynote speech that will address the changing transportation environment around the world as well as the rapidly evolving technology of connected, autonomous, and electric vehicles.

In what will be the largest transportation technology event of 2014, the ITS World Congress will attract more than 10,000 international business, government, and research leaders to the home of America’s auto industry, Detroit, Michigan, from September 7 – 11, 2014, to showcase the latest transportation innovations and share ideas and strategies for advancing the development and deployment of intelligent transportation solutions to solve the world’s transportation challenges.

“Connectivity may drive more positive change for customers than any other technological innovation our industry has produced in decades,” says Barra. “Anywhere in the world that we connect cars to cars, and cars to their surroundings, we will save lives, save time and protect the environment. But only if automakers, suppliers and regulators move forward together to make it happen. That’s what makes this year’s ITS World Congress such a landmark event.”

Barra is the first female to become the leader of a global automaker and was recently named to the Time 100 list as one of the world’s most influential people. This year Fortune magazine also placed her first on its “50 Most Powerful Women in Business” list, and in 2013 Forbes magazine selected her as one of the “World’s 100 Most Powerful Women.” Barra began her career at General Motors in 1980 and has been with the company for more than three decades.

“We are elated to have Mary Barra launch this year’s ITS World Congress and if you want to know what direction the future of transportation is headed, then you cannot afford to miss this event,” said Scott Belcher, president and CEO of ITS America, which hosts the ITS World Congress. “Southeast Michigan is at the heart of a growing intelligent transportation industry that will forever change how we move people and goods. There is no better place to showcase the next generation of high-tech innovation in transportation than in a resurgent Detroit.”

In addition to Barra’s opening ceremony keynote address, General Motors is one of the anchor sponsors of the 2014 ITS World Congress.

The ITS World Congress is the world’s largest transportation technology exhibition, alternating each year between the Americas, Europe, and Asia. The event brings international, national, regional, and local officials together with global transportation innovators, business leaders, investors, researchers, and entrepreneurs with the goal of advancing high-tech solutions to improve transportation safety, efficiency, sustainability, and connectivity.

In partnership with ERTICO-ITS Europe and ITS Asia-Pacific, the 2014 ITS World Congress will draw delegates from more than 65 countries including numerous ministers of transport who will participate in a High-Level Policy Roundtable with State DOT directors from the United States. Among the 250 sessions will be three plenaries featuring industry leaders, modal administrators from the U.S. Department of Transportation and foreign dignitaries; a Chief Technology Officer Summit; town halls on key topics including big data and vehicle automation; and 12 executive sessions focused on the latest research and technology advances from the United States and around the globe.

The ITS World Congress will also feature more than 20 interactive demonstrations including a connected and autonomous vehicle Technology Showcase on Michigan’s Belle Isle; a 300,000 square-foot Expo Hall in the Cobo Center featuring a live Traffic Management Center, a custom racetrack where students will build and compete in electric vehicle contests, and an Entrepreneurial Village for emerging transportation startups.

Michigan Governor Rick Snyder serves as Chair and Michigan DOT Director Kirk Steudle as Vice Chair of the ITS World Congress Honorary Committee which includes General Motors CEO Mary Barra, as well as Ford Motor Company Executive Chairman Bill Ford, Chrysler Group Chairman and CEO Sergio Marchionne, Penske Corporation Chairman Roger Penske, Quicken Loans Chairman Dan Gilbert, Compuware President and CEO Robert Paul, HNTB Infrastructure CEO Robert Slimp, and University of Michigan President Mary Sue Coleman, among others.

For more information on how to register, exhibits, the Technology Showcase and sponsorship information, please visit www.itsworldcongress.org which will also serve as the real-time platform for all news-related items related to the show.

Media Note: Registration is free to all credentialed trade, business, and consumer reporters who work in the transportation, technology or business fields. Press badges allow entry to exhibits, sessions, special networking events, and technology demonstrations. All media must register online through the World Congress website media registration form. For additional questions contact Ashley Simmons at [email protected] or (202) 721-4218.

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