OREANDA-NEWS. November 11, 2015. Today, Automotive News named Nissan executives Rebecca Barker Vest, Diane Allen and Sonia Rief to the publication's 2015 "100 Leading Women in the North American Auto Industry" list. All three women will be honored at the publication's gala celebration tonight at the Max M. and Marjorie S. Fisher Music Center in Detroit.

"With an ever-increasing number of female leaders, particularly in STEM careers, women are redefining the automotive industry," said Jos? Mu?oz, executive vice president, Nissan Motor Co., Ltd., and chairman, Nissan North America. "We are honored and humbled to have inspiring, thought-provoking women like Diane, Sonia and Rebecca within the Nissan family. These women are outstanding examples for the next generation of female corporate leaders to look up to."

Since 2000, every five years Automotive News compiles its list of 100 Leading Women in the North American Auto Industry, recognizing top female executives at automakers, suppliers and dealerships.

Rebecca Barker Vest is vice president, Purchasing, for Nissan North America, Inc. (NNA). In this position, she oversees all purchasing activities for Nissan's operations throughout the North American region. Her responsibilities include supplier quality assurance, purchasing project management and supplier relations. Additionally, she also serves as the North American regional purchasing head for the Renault-Nissan Purchasing Organization (RNPO). Barker Vest joined Nissan in 2009 as the director of powertrain purchasing, where she led purchasing efforts for all powertrain projects in North America (U.S. and Mexico).

Marking her fourth time on this prestigious list, Diane Allen currently serves as senior design manager at Nissan Design America (NDA) located in San Diego, California, where she is responsible for managing design programs on behalf of the Nissan brand, ranging from advance exploratory work to production-vehicle design. Most recently, Allen managed the design development of the entire second-generation TITAN full-size truck lineup, including the TITAN XD powered by Cummins, from design concept and sketch development, to production sheet metal, as well as designing and prototyping all parts, wheels and accessories. Allen has received a number of design awards including the Gold Award for Industrial Design Excellence, the Silver Industrial Design Excellence Award and the Apex Product of Excellence for Angeles Base Line Furniture. Allen also holds a number of patents for her work, such as the innovative Utili-track™ bed channel system available on Nissan's truck lineup.

Sonia Rief is currently the director of Vehicle Program Management and regional chief vehicle engineer for the Nissan Rogue at the Nissan Technical Center North America (NTCNA) in Farmington Hills, Michigan. As director of program management, she oversees the planning and evaluation of development activities from product concept to launch for all models manufactured in the U.S. Additionally, as the regional chief vehicle engineer, Rief is responsible for delivering model year vehicle changes on the Nissan Rogue to meet program requirements for quality, cost and timing.

For more information on Automotive News' "100 Leading Women in the North American Auto Industry," please visit www.autonews.com.