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James Nance - February 19, 1900 – July 1984, an American industrialist who became president of Studebaker Packard.  Later, he was chief executive of the Central National Bank of Cleveland, chairman of the executive committee of Montgomery Ward and chairman of the board of trustees of Cleveland State University.

Nance was born in Portsmouth, Lawrence County, Ohio.  Following military service during World War I, Nance graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University in 1923; he also attended Ohio State University where he pursued postgraduate course work.

Nance began his career at National Cash Register (NCR) in 1924, staying until 1927 when he joined General Motors' Frigidaire division.  In 1940 he left Frigidaire when he was named vice president of Zenith Radio Corporation of Chicago.  Nance was named CEO of General Electric's Hotpoint brand in 1945 and CEO of the Packard Motor Car Company in 1952.

While at Packard, Nance moved to separate the Packard Clipper range of vehicles into a stand-alone brand, Clipper.  He also expedited development of Packard's first V8 engine and automatic transmission, Ultramatic.  Nance helped to orchestrate the 1954 Packard acquisition of the Studebaker Corporation, creating the Studebaker Packard Corporation in 1954.  While the Studebaker merger appeared to be in the best interests of both automakers, Studebaker failed to provide Packard with a full disclosure of its tenuous cash position, jeopardizing both marquees.  While Nance had held informal talks with George W. Mason of Nash Kelvinator about a potential merger that would bring all the U.S. independent automakers under one corporate entity, formal discussions were never established.  Any hope of those discussions moving forward ended with Mason's death in October 1954.

Nance left Studebaker Packard in 1956 when the company was on the verge of insolvency, but not until he found the organization a safe-harbor relationship with airplane manufacturer Curtiss-Wright.

Following his tenure at Studebaker Packard, Nance was named vice president of Ford's Mercury Edsel Lincoln Division, but resigned under pressure from top Ford executives in 1959 when the Edsel's sales were poor.

He left the automobile business after Ford and became president and CEO of Central National Bank of Cleveland, Ohio 1960, being elevated to the position of chairman and CEO in 1962. Following his retirement from Central National, Nance established his own consulting firm in Cleveland, Ohio.