Ernest R. Breech

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Ernest R. Breech (1897–1978) was an American corporate executive. Although he is best remembered for his work in revitalizing Ford Motor Company in the years following World War II, he served similar roles at Trans World Airlines and other companies.

Breech was drafted by the St. Louis Browns but opted to attend Drury College (Drury University) instead. Breech was a founding member of Phi Alpha Sigma, later Theta Kappa Nu fraternity (now Lambda Chi Alpha).

Breech dropped out of college, later taking correspondence courses before taking his Certified Public Accountant exam. Breech worked for the Checker Cab Company, General Motors, and Bendix Aviation before being persuaded by Henry Ford II to come aboard at Ford.

At Ford, before the so-called "Whiz Kids" came on the scene, it was Breech who cleared the ground for expansion by trimming away Ford's corporate fat. Breech was the first of a long line of talented and successful number two men who were later dismissed or resigned under the erratic leadership of Henry Ford II.

He was inducted into the Automotive Hall of Fame in 1979.[1]

The Breech School of Business at Drury University is named in his honor due to his donation. Breech was a 33rd degree Freemason. His induction to that degree was highlighted in the October 8, 1956 issue of Life magazine.

A Great Lakes freighter acquired by the Ford Motor Co.'s dedicated fleet was renamed in his honor until the ship's sale in 1988. As of 2017, that freighter sailed for Lower Lakes Transportation as the Ojibway.  Missing or empty |title= (help)


  1. ^ "Ernest R. Breech". Hall of Fame Inductees. Automotive Hall of Fame. 1979. Archived from the original on March 8, 2016. Retrieved March 9, 2016. 

External links[edit]

  • [ History Channel]