General Motors Photo by Christian Toews

Chief Batton recently visited General Motors in Austin, Texas for a "fire side chat".

Chief Batton Hosted at General Motors

By Christian Toews
January 1, 2022

Chief Gary Batton had the opportunity to visit General Motors (GM) in Austin, Texas, on November 4, 2021. Batton met with GM CIO Tobin Beal (Choctaw tribal member) and GM Global CIO Randy Weeks (Cherokee citizen) for a “fireside chat” broadcast to GM’s 155,000 employees and the Choctaw Nation’s associates. GM’s Indigenous Employee Resource Group organized the chat.

The purpose of this “Fireside chat” was to educate associates and others about the Choctaw Nation and hear from Batton on issues such as tribal sovereignty, culture and business.

After the initial interview and discussion, Batton opened the floor for questions in the auditorium and many people asked questions about the Choctaw people and life in Oklahoma.

GM’s Indigenous Employee Resource Group said they work to educate, inform and create greater awareness among GM employees, customers and the general public about North American Indian culture. After the “Fireside Chat,” Batton met with senior-level executives to discuss ways that the Choctaw Nation can partner with GM to provide opportunities for Choctaw tribal members in the future.

Batton thanked Beal and Weeks for coordinating the opportunity to meet with and speak to GM.