Anselmo Gallegos had the chance to play a key role in the development of a new Chevrolet Camaro before he turned 30. Gallegos helped determine how the Camaro’s convertible version would be built at a General Motors Co. plant in Lansing, MI. He was part of the convertible’s launch team.
“As a member of the Camaro launch team, Anselmo is responsible for the management and development of manufacturing processes, assembly tooling and dimensional performance and total integration for the convertible system in body shop and general assembly areas,” according to a 30 Under 30 nominating letter by Kurt Wiese, GM vice president of global manufacturing engineering, and Keith Martin, engineering group manager. “I’m a huge Camaro fan,” Gallegos said. “When I got put on this program, it was a dream job.”
The new version of the sports car would be more complex than its predecessors. There would be more mixed materials. Gallegos said he couldn’t comment about specifics. But with mixed materials more care is necessary to join certain parts. With dissimilar materials, adhesives or coatings come into play.
The convertible would also be built off a new platform. “The new platform is much improved over the previous platform,” he said. “It provides just an awesome driving potential.” Still, anytime there’s a change in a vehicle platform, it calls for production adjustments. “That’s the beauty of manufacturing,” he said. “There isn’t a typical day.”
Gallegos joined GM (Detroit) in 2011. He received a bachelor’s in mechanical engineering in May 2011 and joined GM in July of that year. He’d obtain a master’s of engineering in global automotive and manufacturing engineering in December 2015.
Gallegos’ first assignment at the automaker was at Warren, MI, where he was an associate manufacturing engineer. It was a one-year rotation through the Global Body Manufacturing Engineering Center. From there, it was a product interface engineer, also at Warren, where his duties included integration between body manufacturing engineering and product development for the Camaro. In August 2014, he received his current assignment as senior manufacturing engineer for the Camaro convertible launch. “I have a big passion for improving manufacturability of our vehicles,” Gallegos said. “You find things that were huge opportunities to avoid problems.”
For the Camaro launch, which began earlier this year, Gallego has been on the plant floor in Lansing, working and talking to machine operators. He said one of his main jobs was “coming up with a more efficient system” for assembling the new convertible model.
At the Lansing plant, his duties include “getting the plant up and ready to meet their targets,” he said. Gallegos is focusing on quality issues in the early stages of production. Besides his engineering duties, Gallegos is a talent scout for the automaker’s Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers and Great Minds in STEM recruiting team.
“Anselmo provides a strong, enthusiastic linkage for General Motors,” according to the 30 Under 30 nominating letter. “He understands the needs and demands of this technical organization and proudly represents the company in a highly competitive environment. He is also a mentor in our current summer intern program.”
In the future, Gallegos wants to deal with issues such as the interaction between automakers and suppliers. “A big push in manufacturing in general is the use of our supply base to provide more complete assemblies to the assembly plant,” he said. “I’ve seen that area grow in the time I’ve been in manufacturing.”
This article was first published in the July 2016 edition of Manufacturing Engineering magazine. Read all of the 2016 30 Under 30 Profiles as a PDF.