Self-driving tech firm Aurora hires its first president

Self-driving technology firm Aurora Innovation Inc. appointed Ossa Fisher as its first president.

The move is part of the company’s efforts to prepare for a commercial launch of autonomous trucks.

Fisher joins Aurora from Istation, an education technology company based in Dallas. She oversaw engineering, product, sales and marketing divisions in her role as Istation’s president and COO, a position she held since 2019.

At Aurora, Fisher will play a central role in scaling operations and maintaining relationships with key partners such as FedEx Corp., Uber Freight and Werner as well as truckmakers such as PACCAR and Volvo.

She will stay in Dallas, a growing operational hub for the company. Aurora had fewer than 20 employees there at the end of 2020, but that number rose to nearly 120 by the end of 2022, according to a company spokesman.

That’s a small fraction of the company’s overall 1,600 employees, currently spread out over the country in Mountain View, Calif.; Pittsburgh; San Francisco; Seattle; Bozeman, Mont.; Detroit; and Colorado.

Aurora intends to commercially launch self-driving trucks without human safety drivers aboard in 2024.

While the company has not specified which route will be used for the inaugural operations, it currently hauls goods while testing on routes in Texas that connect a terminal in the Dallas suburb of Palmer with Houston, and along a separate route that links Fort Worth and El Paso.

Born in Sweden, Fisher moved to the U.S. in 1981 at the age of 4. Before Istation, she held positions at Goldman Sachs and consulting firm Bain & Co.

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