President and Chief Executive Officer, CSX Transportation
Joseph R. Hinrichs, a leader with more than 30 years of experience in the global automotive, manufacturing, and energy sectors, was named President and Chief Executive Officer of CSX in September 2022. Hinrichs brings to CSX a commitment to operational excellence, experience building global businesses through investment in people and culture, and a deep understanding of balancing safety and efficiency in a complex industry.
Hinrichs previously served as President of Ford Motor Company’s global automotive business. In that role, he led the company’s $160-billion automotive operations, overseeing Ford’s global business units and the Ford and Lincoln brands, as well as leading all of Ford’s automotive skill teams, including Product Development, Purchasing, Manufacturing, Labor Affairs, Marketing and Sales, Government Affairs, Information Technology, and Sustainability, Safety and Environmental Engineering. Other titles he held at Ford include President of Global Operations, President of the Americas, President of Asia Pacific and Africa, Chairman & CEO of Ford China, and Chairman & CEO of Ford Canada. Hinrichs has also held executive roles in global manufacturing and materials planning, and logistics.
Hinrichs is recognized for his dedication to operational excellence, successfully managing and growing complex P&Ls, consistently increasing profits, and engaging with the workforce. In his recent roles, he spearheaded global business growth as he oversaw the construction of new overseas manufacturing plants, developed and launched new vehicles and services, and improved product quality.
Further, Hinrichs is lauded for working seamlessly with a variety of stakeholders and managing large teams. In his latest role at Ford, Hinrichs oversaw nearly 200,000 employees and 10,000 Ford and Lincoln dealers around the world. During his time as President of the Americas, he led the team to deliver the three most profitable years in the history of Ford’s North American business unit and its best ever quality rankings.
Throughout his career, Hinrichs has been motivated by people and focused on forging strong relationships to generate successful business outcomes. Hinrichs has a proven track record in building collaborative relationships with labor leaders and represented workgroups during his time at Ford and GM. With a people-first mentality, Hinrichs believes listening to and learning from the workforce is critical to finding the right solutions and creating a winning culture.
An Ohio native, Hinrichs began his career with General Motors in 1989. After joining as an engineer, he requested a production management position and quickly ascended to plant manager. Following his tenure at Ryan Enterprises from 1998 to 2000 where he oversaw the private equity firm’s investments in small entrepreneurial businesses – including those made in the manufacturing sphere – Hinrichs joined Ford to run its Van Dyke Transmissions Plant. Hinrichs ascended through roles of increasing responsibility, assuming his first global role just two years into his career at Ford.
Hinrichs serves in multiple advisory and board roles of various companies including Exide Technologies, Luminar Technologies, microDrive, and First Move Capital. Hinrichs previously served as a senior advisor at Boyden California, an operating advisor at Assembly Ventures, as well as a director at Ascend Wellness Holdings, GPR, Inc., Rivian Automotive, Inc. and Ford Motor Credit Company. He was Chairman of the National Minority Supplier Development Council from 2016 to 2019 and also served on the boards of CEO Climate Dialogue, Climate Leadership Council, and the US-China Business Council.
Hinrichs has received numerous awards and recognition during his automotive career. In 2019 he was named an Automotive News All Star as the top global operations executive in the automotive industry. Upon his retirement in 2020, J.D. Power honored Hinrichs with a rare individual Distinguished Service Award recognizing his contributions to improving quality in the automotive industry. In 2015 he was named a Kentucky Colonel by the governor of Kentucky for his leadership in supporting successful manufacturing in the commonwealth.
Hinrichs holds a Bachelor of Electrical Engineering magna cum laude from the University of Dayton and an MBA from the Harvard Business School. He also holds an Honorary Doctor of Human Letters from Tiffin University and an Honorary Doctor of Science and Business Administration from Cleary University.