By Greg Hazley
J. Christopher Preuss will step down as president of OnStar to start a communications consulting business on Feb. 1, relinquishing the reins after a year at the helm of GM’s technology and security service.
Preuss was a seasoned corporate communications hand at GM when he was tapped to head OnStar in March 2010. Posts included VP of corporate communications, VP of GM Europe, and staff director of government affairs and technology communications, among others during 17 years at GM and Chrysler.
OnStar's director of public affairs and corporate communications, Vijay Iyer, told O'Dwyer's that "opening up a consultancy is something that Chris has been thinking about for some time and he's planning to pursue now," but Iyer couldn't provide details "at this point in time."
"Over the past year, Chris was instrumental in helping create a clear vision and strategy for aligning OnStar with GM infotainment plans and entering the retail market," Stephen Girsky, vice chairman at GM, said in a statement.
Earlier agency stints for Preuss included GolinHarris and MSLGroup.
OnStar, which recently opened its service to non-GM automobiles and has moved to sync with drivers’ mobile phones, has tapped OnStar executive director and former wireless industry exec Linda Marshall as president.