Cummins Inc. has promoted the head of its engine business as the company’s new president and chief operating officer.
Rich Freeland will report to Cummins Chairman and CEO Tom Linebarger, with his focus on the company’s daily operations.
Freeland said the change, announced by the Columbus-based engine maker Tuesday, will allow Linebarger to focus more on leading the company’s strategy, allowing Freeland to ensure that the company executes the plan.
“We are building from a position of strength, and we want to continue to execute and invest in the future,” Freeland said. “This puts an organizational structure in place that better matches what the business
requirements are now. We want to continue to be a growth company.”
Freeland, 56, has been the Engine Business president for Cummins since 2010, overseeing development, manufacturing, marketing and sales for the company’s largest business unit.
Linebarger remains chairman and CEO but relinquishes his role as company president.
Dave Crompton will succeed Freeland as president of the company’s engine business.
Crompton previously led the Heavy Duty MidRange and Light Duty segment of the engine business.
Linebarger said the company’s leadership in technologies, global presence and global partnerships helps its customers succeed in all of its markets and the changes are designed to build on that success.
“As we continue to grow profitably around the world, we want to have a leadership team capable of meeting our demanding short-term targets every day, while making the right long-term strategic investments necessary to sustain future profitable growth,” Linebarger said in a statement. “We want to be able to do these two things well on a global basis and during volatile economic conditions.”
Freeland said the company reviews its organizational structure annually and decided the time was right to make the changes.
The company’s board of directors recently asked whether the company was structured properly to take advantage of its forward momentum, but Freeland said no single factor prompted the changes.
“The company is in a really good position, and the change is geared to decide how to best move forward from here,” Freeland said. “We’ve been talking and thinking about this for some time and the organizational change is designed to make sure we are positioned to take advantage of these opportunities.”
Freeland said his new position is a bit daunting but is confident his experience has prepared him for the new role.
“I’ve led three of the four businesses, and I inherit a leadership team that is incredible,” Freeland said. “(The biggest transition) is that I’ll now be leading a group of people that I have worked closely with.”
Freeland said Crompton is expected to make a smooth transition into his new position as well.
“Dave has led a big portion of the engine business for some time now and now he’s the perfect person to lead it going forward,” Freeland said.
As the company has continued to grow globally, Freeland said it only makes sense to expand the leadership team to increase the capacity to better focus on its long-term vision.
It is not the first time a Cummins CEO has relinquished the role of company president.
Tim Solso, Cummins CEO from 2000 to 2011, turned the role of president over to Joe Loughrey in 2005. When Loughery retired in 2008, Linebarger was named president and maintained that role when he became chairman and CEO in 2012.