Joachim Milberg, 73
Former CEO and Chairman, BMW
TITLE: Former CEO and Chairman
BASED: Munich, Germany
CAREER HIGHLIGHTS: Milberg joined BMW's management board in 1993 as production chief. He served as BMW CEO from February 1999 until 2002, moving to the automaker's supervisory board that year. After two years Milberg was promoted to chairman of BMW, a job he held until May 2015.
REASON FOR WINNING: The former professor inherited the Rover crisis from ousted CEO Bernd Pischetsrieder, eventually disposing of the UK mass-market brand while shrewdly retaining Mini. With Mini, BMW brand and Rolls-Royce, he successfully molded the group into a premium automaker that could offer high-end car buyers everything from subcompacts to ultraluxury large sedans.