Executive Director, Global Innovation
Jeff Stout is Executive Director, Global Innovation for Yanfeng. In this role, Jeff is responsible for all innovation activity globally for the company, which encompasses technology scouting, early customer ideation, co-innovation and futuring activities, as well as all general innovation related liaison work with the team and customers.
In 2019, Yanfeng announced the integration of its Research & Development activities in the areas of interiors, seating, electronics, safety, and exteriors into the global Yanfeng Technology unit to accelerate the realization of its Smart Cabin vision for future automotive interiors. Stout leads innovation for this group.
Prior to this appointment, Stout was most recently Executive Director, North America Innovation and New Mobility for Yanfeng Automotive Interiors. He also was Director of Product Management for the company. Jeff began his professional career with Johnson Controls in 1994 as a Product Engineer (in July 2015, Johnson Controls and Yanfeng Automotive Trim Systems formed a joint venture for the interiors business of both companies called Yanfeng Automotive Interiors). At Johnson Controls, he held a variety of leadership roles of increasing responsibility in Engineering and Innovation, including an expat assignment leading all new interiors launches in China for Johnson Controls’ joint venture with FAW.
He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Philosophy from Calvin College. He also holds a Master of Science degree in Engineering Leadership.
In terms of community involvement, Stout started an inner-city housing development initiative in Grand Rapids.