Lordstown Motors, an electric light duty truck startup which took over the former GM Cruze assembly plant in Ohio, has named temporary replacements for CEO Steve Burns and CFO Julio Rodriguez who both resigned.

The move came, a company statement said, as it “begins to transition from the R&D and early production phase to the commercial production phase of its business”.

Lead independent director Angela Strand has been appointed executive chairwoman and will “oversee the organisation’s transition until a permanent CEO is identified, while Becky Roof will serve as interim CFO”.

The changes took effective immediately and Lordstown has engaged an executive search firm to recruit a permanent CEO and CFO.

Board of directors spokesman David Hamamoto said: “As we transition to the commercial stage of our business – with planned commencement of limited production in late-September – we have to put in place a seasoned management team with deep experience leading and operating publicly-listed OEM companies.”

President Rich Schmidt will continue to oversee all day-to-day operations, including manufacturing and engineering. He was promoted in November having previously served as chief production officer. He has over 30 years of automotive industry expertise, including experiences at Toyota and Nissan, Hyundai, Volkswagen, J.D. Power, and Tesla Motors.

Jane Ritson-Parsons, formerly interim chief brand officer, has been appointed COO. She was most recently at Hasbro as group executive, global marketing.

Carter Driscoll, formerly head of investor relations, has been promoted to VP, corporate development, capital markets and investor relations.

Strand is managing director of Strand Strategy, an advisory firm specialising in technology, business strategy and organisation development.

Lordstown said she is considered a thought leader and expert in the commercial electric vehicle sector, with a decade of real-world executive and advisory experience working with fleets, fleet management companies, OEMs, utilities, financing and infrastructure solutions providers to successfully launch and deploy electric trucks and end-to-end infrastructure.

Roof is a certified public accountant and financial executive who has served as a consultant to publicly traded companies and in an interim CFO capacity at numerous companies including Eastman Kodak, Hudson’s Bay Company, Saks Fifth Avenue and Aceto Corporation.