edsel.com: Division


If you have information about the organization
within the Edsel Division during the 1950s,
please don't hesitate to contact admin@edsel.com.  Thanks!

Edsel Division Headquarters
Ecorse Township, Michigan


Ernest Breech
Ford Chief Executive Officer

Robert MacNamara
Vice President, Vehicle Operations

Lewis Crusoe
Vice President, Vehicle Operations


Richard E. Krafve

Vice President, Ford Motor Company
General Manager, Edsel Division
Mr. Krafve was in charge of the Edsel program from its inception in early 1955.  At that time he was named General Manager of the Special Products Division, which later became Edsel Division.
He was formerly Assistant General Manager of the Lincoln-Mercury Division.  Prior to that, he was Director of the Ford's Office of Defense Products, where he coordinated all phases of defense production assignments.
Mr. Krafve came to Ford Motor Company in 1947 as Assistant to the Vice President of Purchasing.  Later, as the Assistant to the Vice President of Manufacturing, he helped develop the new Ford production organization, including the expansion and decentralization of company-wide manufacturing operations.



 George Walker
Ford Corporate Design Chief

Roy Brown, Jr
Chief Stylist

Bob "Robin" Jones
Assistant Stylist
Supervisor - Exterior Design E-F

Don Danaski
(Wheel cover spinner, rear bumper)

Jim Sipple
(Horsecollar opening)

Ken Spenser
(1959 Rear bumper)

Elwood Engle
(Bermuda trim ornament placement)

Ken Pheasant
(Nameplate scripts & lettering)

Holden Koto
Supervisor - Exterior Design E-M

Ray Slate

Rod Smith
Designer - E-M
(Back-up lights)

Dick Kimball
(Wheel cover spinner backplate)

Michael Nowicki
Master Modeler

Norman Nebozenko

Marty Hrbal
(Hooded mirror)

Sales and Marketing


J. C. (Larry) Doyle

General Sales and Marketing Manager
Edsel Division
Mr. Doyle spent more than 40 years at Ford Motor Company.  His career encompassed every important Ford milestone in that time, from the legendary Model T right up through launching the Edsel.  He started as an office oy in 1916 in Kansas City.  Later, he carried out various sales assignments in St. Paul, Chester, PA and Houston.  In 1939, he went to St. Louis as District Manager.
In 1945, he was assigned as Ford Division's Dearborn District Manager.  Two years later, he became Central Regional Manager in Detroit.  Then, in June 1952, he was named Sales and Advertising Manager for all Ford Motor Company divisions.  He held this position until his appointment to the Edsel Division in May, 1955.


 Norman K. VanDerzee
 Assistant General Sales Manager
 Edsel Division
Mr. VanDerzee joined the Edsel Division in September 1956, after extensive experience in all phases of the automobile business.  The majority of those years he spent with Hudson Motor Car Company, rising through the company to the position of Sales Vice President in 1949.  When Hudson became a part of American Motors, Mr. VanDerzee stayed on as Vice President for more than a year before joining with the Edsel Division.


 R. F. G. Copeland
 Assistant General Sales Manager
 Edsel Division
Mr. Copeland joined Ford Motor Company in 1948 to direct advertising and sales promotion for the Lincoln-Mercury Division, following many years of editorial and advertising experience.  Just prior to joining the Edsel Division on January 1, 1956, he served as Director of Product Advertising and Sales Promotion for the Ford Motor Company.  His first association with the automobile industry was as automotive editor of the Chicago Herald-Examiner in 1927.


 R. J. McGovern
 Executive Assistant to the General Sales and Marketing Manager
 Edsel Division
Mr. McGovern joined the Edsel Division in early 1957 after more than twenty years in the automobile business.  A Zone Manager for Buick from 1939-49, he established his own dealership in Richmond, Virginia and operated it until 1954.  In that year, he joined Chrysler Corporation and was assigned to the executive sales staff in Detroit.  In 1955, he was named Director of Markets for Chrysler Corporation.

Edsel District Sales Offices

There were 24 Edsel District Sales Offices in the United States, divided into five Regional areas.

  Eastern Sales Region


 John F. Connors, Jr.
 Eastern Regional Manager
 Newark, New Jersey

 Malcolm R. Fuller
 Boston District Manager
 Needham Heights, Massachusetts

 C. F. Sylvester
 Syracuse District Manager
 Syracuse, New York

 Patrick A. Brescia
 New York District Manager
 Fort Lee, New Jersey

 William J. Magarity
 Philadelphia District Manager
 Camden, New Jersey

 Emerson Planck
 Washington District Manager
 Arlington, Virginia


  Central Sales Region


 O. L. (Luke) Wigton
 Central Regional Manager
 Detroit, Michigan

 Harley F. Riley
 Detroit District Manager
 Detroit, Michigan

 George F. Walters
 Cleveland District Manager
 Cleveland, Ohio

 John H. Scharnhorst
 Columbus District Manager
 Columbus, Ohio

 Hiller A. Pries
 Indianapolis District Manager
 Indianapolis, Indiana


  Midwest Sales Region


 C. H. (Chick) O'Donohue
 Midwest Regional Manager
 Chicago, Illinois

 D. Edward Manning
 Chicago District Manager
 Chicago, Illinois

 A. E. Jacobsen
 St Louis District Manager
 Clayton, Missouri

 Chet W. Johnson
 Twin Cities District Manager
 Minneapolis, Minnesota

 Louis A. Wehde
 Des Moines District Manager
 Des Moines, Iowa

 Elwood S. Gross
 Kansas City District Manager
 Kansas City, Missouri


  Southern Sales Region


 George P. Montagnet
 Southern Regional Manager
 New Orleans, Louisiana

 J. D. Flynn
 Jacksonville District Manager
 Jacksonville, Florida

 Roy A. Blount
 Atlanta District Manager
 Atlanta, Georgia

 Claiborne H. Weigand
 New Orleans District Manager
 New Orleans, Louisiana

 William W. Sugg
 Memphis District Manager
 Memphis, Tennessee

 George O. Simmons
 Houston District Manager
 Houston, Texas

 Robert J. Sanford
 Dallas District Manager
 Dallas, Texas


  Western Sales Region


 Levitt T. (Doc) Kouns
 Western Regional Manager
 San Francisco, California

 Harry M. Pritchard
 Denver District Manager
 Denver, Colorado

 Paul W. Pursley
 Los Angeles District Manager
 Beverly Hills, California

 Wallace E. Boyer
 San Francisco District Manager
 San Francisco, California

 Richard J. Siewers
 Seattle District Manager
 Seattle, Washington

Foote, Cone & Belding
Edsel Advertising Agency

C. Gayle Warnock
Public Relations

By mid-January 1958, operations of the Edsel Division were combined with the Mercury and Lincoln, and renamed the M-E-L Division
Headquarters: Ford's Dearborn, Michigan facility.

Ben D. Mills
M-E-L General Manager

C.E. Bowie
General Sales Manager

L.C. Beebe
Edsel Marketing Manager

I.B. "Bud" Kaufman
Chief Stylist

Bill Wheeler
(1960 scripts & lettering)

Kenyon & Eckhardt
Edsel Advertising Agency

Special Thanks

Magne Teigen for the District Sales Office organization, retired Ford Design Manager Howard Payne for clarifications and missing pieces, and to Dallas Assistant District Sales Manager Tom Sneary for the list of Field Sales personnel (coming soon).