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Gov. Ricketts Announces Appointment of Dr. Theo Freye to Lead New Trade Office in Germany

Media Contacts:  

Taylor Gage, 402-471-1970

Justin Pinkerman, 402-471-1967


Media Release:

Gov. Ricketts Announces Appointment of Dr. Theo Freye to Lead New Trade Office in Germany


Dr. Theo W. Freye


Dr. Theo W. Freye


LINCOLN – Today, Governor Pete Ricketts announced the appointment of Dr. Theo W. Freye to lead the Nebraska Department of Economic Development’s new office in Germany.  The office will be known as the Nebraska Center Germany.


“With his track record of success leading CLAAS North America in Omaha, Theo Freye has invaluable experience cultivating partnerships between American and German businesses,” said Governor Pete Ricketts. “Theo will be an excellent representative for Nebraska in Germany.”   


The Nebraska Department of Economic Development (DED) is the lead economic development agency for the State of Nebraska.  DED’s International Business Development team works to promote international investment in Nebraska and the growth of Nebraska’s businesses on a global scale.  Dr. Freye will represent Nebraska in Germany as a place for business and assist Nebraska companies in their expansion efforts in the country.  Nebraska Center Germany joins Nebraska Center Japan as the state’s second international office.


“We are incredibly pleased to have Theo Freye join the Nebraska Department of Economic Development to lead Nebraska Center Germany at a time when the state is increasingly involved in the country,” said DED Director Anthony Goins.  “With Theo’s assistance, we hope to capture the momentum from Gov. Ricketts’ November 2019 trade mission to Germany.”


Dr. Freye is the retired CEO (Speaker of the Executive Board) of CLAAS KgaA.  CLAAS is a $4.5 billion family-owned agricultural machinery firm headquartered in Germany.  During his 34-year career with CLAAS, Theo led efforts to expand the company internationally and guided its strategic growth.  Dr. Freye led the foundation and management of CLAAS North America in Omaha, Nebraska.  This facility is now the headquarters for CLAAS on the continent.  Theo held various leadership positions at CLAAS North America, including Chairman and President.  


Dr. Freye holds a Master's degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Braunschweig and a Ph.D. in Agricultural Science from the University of Hohenheim.


Visit the Nebraska Center Germany website by clicking here.