Tesla’s head of policy and business dev leaves

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Tesla’s head of policy and business development, Rohan Patel, has left the automaker and he is the second executive to do so today.

Patel came to Tesla in 2017 after leaving working as a “Special Assistant to the President for Intergovernmental Affairs and Sr Advisor for Climate/Energy” in Obama’s White House.

He became Tesla’s Vice President of Public Policy and Business Development.

The executive led many efforts at Tesla, including relations with the many government entities and regulators that Tesla has to deal with.

After 7 years at Tesla, Patel announced that he is leaving today:

Like Tesla’s SVP of engineering, Drew Baglino, Patel didn’t give a reason for leaving Tesla today. He also doesn’t appear to have been recruited by a competitor as he says that his only plan is to spend time with his family.

The two high-profile departures come as Elon Musk announced that Tesla is letting go of more than 10% of its workforce in a massive round of layoffs.

Since Musk bought Twitter, Patel was amongst a few Tesla executives and engineers who took to the platform to comment on the company’s operations and interact with the Tesla community.

We noted when we reported on the layoffs early this morning that Patel and Baglino already didn’t have their “Tesla badges” on X. Badges are used to represent affiliations to certain organization that pay for gold badges on the social media platform.

Electrek’s Take

On the same day Tesla is starting a massive round of layoffs, two of its most high-profile and longest-standing executives are leaving.

It’s not a great look.

With Elon as a part-time CEO, several high-profile departures in the last 6 months, including two of Tesla’s only 4 listed leaders who are deemed important enough that they have to report stock transactions left in the last 6 months.

It’s bad. I think there’s a clear leadership crisis at Tesla that has been ongoing since Elon bought Twitter and started his xAi, and the board hasn’t done much about it.

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