Having already built three car factories from the ground up, Katarina Fjording — vice president in charge of Volvo’s first U.S. manufacturing site in Berkeley County — knows the drill by now.
Despite land-clearing setbacks following the October floods, Fjording has construction at the site off Interstate 26 near Ridgeville back on track. Pilings are in place for Volvo’s body shop and paint shop and the company soon will start driving pilings for its assembly building. Foundations will follow and vertical construction could begin as soon as May.
Before moving to the Charleston region last year, Fjording — a mechanical engineer — was in charge of building Volvo’s trio of manufacturing plants in China. It was one of the latest stops in a career that has taken her around the globe, including stints in Chicago, Shanghai and at Volvo’s headquarters in Gothenburg, Sweden.
Having found a Charleston area home near the beach, Fjording is able to enjoy one of her outdoor passions — sailboat racing. And Fjording said she has been overwhelmed by Charleston’s famous hospitality. An avid hunter, she has already received enough hunting excursion invitations to keep her busy for several seasons.