Donald J. Walker is a Canadian automotive executive and the former Chief Executive Officer of Magna International Inc., a Canadian global automotive supplier.
Donald J. Walker grew up in Toronto, Ontario, and graduated from the University of Waterloo’s Mechanical Engineering Program in 1980.
Donald J. Walker is known for his extensive knowledge and understanding of the automotive industry, as well as the culture, operations, key personnel, customers, suppliers and the complex drivers of Magna International Inc. As a mobility technology company that employs approximately 155,000 people and has 320 facilities in 29 countries, Magna International Inc. has complete vehicle engineering and contract manufacturing expertise, as well as product capabilities that include body, chassis, exteriors, seating, powertrain, active driver assistance, electronics, mechatronics, mirrors, lighting and roof systems. Walker served as Magna’s Chief Executive Officer between 1994 and 2001. Between 2001 and 2005, Walker worked as Vice-President of Product Development and Engineering, Chief Operating Officer and President, in addition to being Chief Executive of Intier Automotive Inc., one of Magna’s former publicly-traded subsidiaries. In 2005, Walker returned to being Magna’s Chief Executive Officer, where sales grew from $23 billion USD to approximately $40 billion USD. Walker’s commitment to transparent and effective leadership, responsiveness to the Board, and integrity in all aspects of the company’s business, helped push the company to reach its full potential through world-class manufacturing, innovation and leadership development. At the end of 2020, after a 33-year career with Magna International Inc., Walker retired.
As the former Chief Executive Officer of Magna International Inc, and as a worldwide automotive supplier with a market capitalization of $36 billion that designs, develops, and produces components and systems for the world’s major automakers, Donald J. Walker has an estimated net worth of $28 million.
As a professional engineer, Donald J. Walker has accomplished many goals throughout his career. The Globe and Mail’s 1996 “Top 40 Under 40” list awarded Walker as an outstanding young achiever in Canadian business. In 2014, Walker was announced by The Globe and Mail as Canada’s Outstanding CEO of the Year. He was also named in Fortune Magazine’s Businessperson of the Year list of 2015. Walker made Financial Post Magazine’s 2016 Power List of 25 Most Influential Individuals; and Canadian Business Magazine’s 2016 ranking of Canada’s Most Powerful Business People. The Toronto Star included him on their list of “Key Players to Watch in 2017”, as well as Motor Trend Magazine’s 2017 Power List. Prior to joining Magna in 1987, Mr. Walker spent seven years at General Motors in various engineering and manufacturing positions. Walker previously served as Magna’s Co-Chief Executive Officer from 2005 to 2010, and President and Chief Executive Officer from 1994 to 2001. Since 2011, Walker has been the Chair of the Canadian Automotive Partnership Council (CAPC) with the Canadian federal and provincial governments, which serves to identify both short and long-term priorities to help ensure the future health of the automotive industry in Canada. Walker is also the past Chairman of the Automotive Parts Manufacturers Association (APMA). Most recently, the CEOWORLD Magazine listed Walker among the richest CEOs of Canada in 2021.