Tesla replaces his general counsel, Dane Butswinkas, the company said Wednesday. Jonathan Chang, the current vice president of legal affairs of Tesla, takes over the position of Butswinkas, effective Wednesday.
It is yet another departure point for Tesla, which has achieved a lot of turnover in its ranks in recent years. CFO Deepak Ahuja recently said that he will leave the company after he has spent his second stint at the manufacturer of electric cars.
This is probably more proof that Tesla is not a company for everyone and that Elon Musk is a tough boss, said Gene Munster, managing partner at Loup Ventures.
"He's in a person of a billion people," Munster said. "And this is even more proof, and I think this is the biggest challenge the company has – maintaining top talent."
Chang, who is 40 years old, has been with Tesla for eight years. He has been dealing lately with legal issues relating to securities, mergers and acquisitions, real estate, compliance and sales in the United States and Europe, according to Tesla. He has been involved in Tesla's attempts to overthrow state laws prohibiting the direct sale of cars to customers in the United States. He will report directly to CEO Musk.
The Tesla shares fell almost 1 percent Thursday morning.
"I have been grateful for the opportunity to work with Elon and Tesla in the past seven months, first as an external counselor and recently as General Counsel at Tesla, returning to my home in Washington, DC and to my trial practice. Williams & Connolly, "said Butswinkas. "I look forward to continuing my work at Tesla in an external advisory role, I have had a lot of confidence and trust in the leadership qualities of Jonathan and in the Tesla team." When I joined the company, I said it would be difficult to find a more timely identification. or essential mission than that of Tesla – that is as true today as it was then. "
Butswinkas left for work after only two months. A person familiar with the case said he was not a good cultural fit with Tesla and wanted to return to his family and law practice in Washington, D.C.