Rich Freeland was born in a farming community outside of Lafayette, Indiana, and grew up working on the family farm as one of the youngest of eight children. At an early age, his parents instilled in him the value of hard work, teamwork and integrity, which would guide Rich throughout his personal and professional life. After high school, Rich left the family farm to attend the Krannert School of Management at Purdue University, where he earned his B.S. degree in Industrial Management in 1979. He later went on to earn an MBA from Indiana University in 1987.
Rich Freeland joined Cummins in 1979, one day after graduating from Purdue, as a foreman at the Cummins Parts Distribution Center in Columbus where he worked managing second shift operations. He soon assumed the role of Industrial Engineer in 1981 at the same location and General Foreman in 1984. Rich then advanced to positions of increasing responsibility, including:
- Plant Manager of the Diesel ReCon Plant in Memphis
- Plant Manager of the Columbus Engine Plant in Columbus
- Vice President of Purchasing
- President of the Distribution Business
- President of the Components Group (2008-2010)
- President of the Engine Business (2010-2014)
Rich has served as Cummins President and Chief Operations Officer since July 2014, bringing a unique perspective to the position after having led three of the four Cummins business segments.
Throughout his nearly 40 years at Cummins, he has seen the company expand globally, growing from to $1.7 billion in sales in 1979 to more than $20 billion in 2017. The increase in sales over this time is significant, but even more significant is the way in which this success was achieved. Throughout this time, and still today, Cummins focuses on a steadfast commitment to its employees and the company’s core values, like integrity and teamwork. It has always been just as or even more important to Cummins leadership to focus on how Cummins did business as it was to focus on what the company did.
Similarly, during this time Rich also continued his personal commitment to Cummins’ core values, and its employees and communities, by overseeing the company’s U.S. diversity initiative, serving as sponsor of Cummins’ Latino affinity group and helping to lead the Cummins-United Way annual giving campaign.
Rich also serves on Cummins’ Board of Directors, as well as the boards of Valvoline and the National Association of Manufacturers.
Rich lives in Columbus with his wife, where they raised two daughters.
He is now the proud grandfather of four.