Tesla Regulatory Chief Leaves for Faraday Future

A former Tesla Motors executive who played a key role in lobbying for Tesla’s right to sell cars at retail stores has taken a new job with Faraday Future.

James Chen, Tesla’s former vice president of regulatory affairs and deputy general counsel, has taken on the role of VP of government relations and general counsel for Faraday Future. Chen will lead all aspects of government affairs both domestically and internationally, along with strategic partnerships and comprehensive policy and legal compliance, the company said.

“We’re building a whole new relationship with transportation… but we can’t do it alone. Strong alliances and government partnerships will be key to realizing our vision,” Faraday Future said in a statement.

At Tesla Motors, Chen provided policy and regulatory guidance and helped lead the company’s business objectives. He’d played a leading role in dealing with state dealer associations pushing to block Tesla from being able to sell cars to consumers at its own retail outlets.

Prior to Tesla, Chen served as a partner at two of Washington D.C.’s most reputable law firms. He’d specialized in advising clients on worldwide regulatory issues affecting truck and car manufacturers and industry suppliers; Chen started his career as an attorney and advisor for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. In 2010 and 2011, he was named one of the best environmental lawyers in the country by Best Lawyers in America.

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Chen is one of several Tesla executives who’ve left the company this year, some of whom have transitioned over to Faraday Future. Tesla vice president of production Greg Reichow and vice president of manufacturing Josh Ensign, were both slated to leave Tesla earlier this month, which the electric automaker confirmed.

A source told Bloomberg that Reichow and Ensign are leaving Tesla because of production delays and glitches, along with a recall that has plagued the company’s Model X crossover. Tesla denies this.

Inside EVs