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Member of the Board of Management
Mr. Bernhard was born on September 3, 1960, in Boehen, Germany. After attending school in Bavaria and obtaining his Abitur, he completed a master’s degree in electrical engineering and economics at the Technical University Darmstadt in 1986 and received his MBA from Columbia Business School in 1988. He completed his doctoral degree, with a dissertation on international exchange rate risks, at the Johann Wolfgang Goethe University in Frankfurt in 1990. During his graduate studies, he received scholarships from the Studienstiftung des Deutschen Volkes and the DAAD.
Mr. Bernhard then joined Mercedes-Benz in 1992 as a project manager for the reduction of material costs and increase in productivity in Mercedes-Benz AG assembly plants. In 1994, he became S-Class assembly center manager at the Mercedes-Benz AG Sindelfingen plant, with responsibility for the S-Class launch. He was promoted to managing director of Mercedes-AMG GmbH in 1999. Mr. Bernhard was appointed a member of the board of management of DaimlerChrysler AG in November 2000 and held the position of chief operating officer of the Chrysler Group from November 2000 until April 2004. During this time he was responsible for the turnaround of the Chrysler Group. In February 2005, he joined the board of the Volkswagen AG and became chairman of the VW Group brands (Volkswagen, Skoda, Bentley and Bugatti) from May 2005 to February 2007. During this time, he was responsible for the turnaround of the Volkswagen brand.
From March to July 2007, he was instrumental in the sale of the Chrysler Group of DaimlerChrysler AG to Cerberus.
In April 2009 he rejoined Daimler AG as head of the Mercedes-Benz Light Truck Division. In February 2010 he was appointed a member of the board of Daimler AG.