Vivian R. Pickard

Vivian Pickard

President & CEO, The Pickard Group 

President, General Motors Foundation and Director, Corporate Relations (retired)

Vivian Pickard is an accomplished Fortune 500 Executive with expertise in corporate & community relations, marketing, public policy, health care and philanthropic endeavors. Her depth of knowledge and experience in developing fundraising strategies and overseeing giving efforts in the areas of education, health, human services, the environment, and community development led to General Motors philanthropic recognition on a national and international level.  Vivian’s exemplary leadership over the last 20 years has led to multiple partnerships and investments that have helped change lives, influence communities, and improve the environment. Her ability to combine her corporate and community relations with partnership development has contributed to her success.

Most recently, as President, General Motors Foundation and Director, Corporate Relations, Vivian was responsible for all of General Motors’ US giving, the development of the strategic plan for the Foundation and corporate giving, and an annual budget of over $42 M. During her tenure in this position, she significantly brought strategy and impact to GM’s overall giving and cause related marketing.  Further, Vivian increased General Motors’ “Share of Voice” in the automotive field to 58% of overall media. She has also been a member of the General Motors’ Diversity Council and partnered with GM’s global business units as an advisor.

Vivian serves as an active member of Fifth Third Bank – Eastern Michigan. She has been instrumental in helping to develop strategic initiatives for improving the organization’s bottom line.

As a community advocate and philanthropist, Vivian has served on numerous boards including:  Inforum, The Parade Company, Fifth Third Bank – Eastern Michigan, Council of Michigan Foundations, Trumpet Awards Foundation, the Sphinx Organization, as well as the Black Women’s Agenda. She is also a member of the Executive Leadership Council, the International Women’s Forum and she serves on the Executive Committee for The Links, Inc., as well as participates as a Board Member of The Links Foundation. She was recently appointed by Governor Snyder to serve as part of a five-member board of the Medical Marihuana Licensing Board for the State of Michigan. Her previous roles include past President of The Black Women’s Agenda, Inc., and past Board Chair of Inforum, a highly acclaimed professional women’s alliance.

Vivian is widely known and well respected for her dedication to community service.  Her accomplishments have been acknowledged by the many awards she has received including: the Spirit of the Dream Award from the United Negro College Fund, Driven’s Philanthropic Pioneer Award, and Multicultural Media Award for Global Community Leadership. In 2015, Vivian was honored with The Charles H. Moore Award for Leadership in Cooperate Community Engagement from CECP, she was recognized as one of 25 Influential Black Women In Business, by The Network Journal.  Vivian was also presented with the Role Model Award by Alternatives for Girls.  In 2014, she was named one of the 50 Most Powerful African Americans in Southeast Michigan (POWER 50-Michigan Chronicle), while she also received the 2014 Diversity Business Leader Award from Corp! Magazine, as well as the Global Community Award at the 2014 North American International Auto Show Multicultural Media Luncheon.

A long-term General Motors’ employee, Vivian has held multiple key roles within the organization including management positions within Finance, Human Resources, and Public Policy functions.   She served over ten years on the corporate staff of GM’s Health Care Department where she had responsibility for developing health care programs and initiatives for hourly and salaried employees, working with carriers and unions on reducing health care expenses, and negotiating health care contracts for hourly and salaried employees.

Vivian earned her Masters of Business Administration degree in Personnel Management from Central Michigan University, while also holding a Bachelor’s of Science in Human Services Administration from Ferris State University. She is a lifetime member of the NAACP, the National Council of Negro Women, the National Black MBA Association, and is a graduate of Leadership Detroit Class XVII.