Rivian Automotive Has Been Attracting Talented Experts From Many Other Auto Giants

By Amit Chowdhry ● Updated August 6, 2019
  • Electric vehicle company Rivian Automotive has been attracting talented experts from many other auto giants
  • Here are some examples of the talent that Rivian hired

Michigan-based EV company Rivian Automotive made a big splash in late 2018 when it came out of stealth mode after eight years to introduce an electric pickup truck (R1T) and electric SUV (R1S) at the LA Auto Show.

And earlier this year, Rivian announced it raised $700 million in funding led by Amazon followed by $500 million in funding led by Ford. Now Rivian has nearly 750 employees, including some of the talented experts that arrived other auto giants.

In multiple interviews, Rivian founder and CEO RJ Scaringe unveiled that his goals were to create vehicles that have a long-range, high-performance, off-road capabilities, and intuitive technologies. To make this happen, Rivian has been aggressively hiring talent from some of the best automotive and tech companies.

According to The Verge — which conducted research through LinkedIn — Rivian Automotive hired dozens of employees from Ford, McLaren, Tesla, and Faraday Future. The Verge said that Rivian hired around 50 former Faraday Future employees, including at least 34 that were furloughed late last year. And Rivian hired at least 20 employees from Ford, 6 employees from Apple, and 12 employees from Chinese EV company Byton.

Some of the notable hires include:

Michael Bell – CTO at Rivian

Previously worked at Apple for 16 years and Palm for 3 years

Michael McHale – Head of Corporate Communications at Rivian

Previously a corporate communications executive at Subaru, BMW, and MINI

Randy Frank – Vice President – Body and Interior Engineering at Rivian

Spent nearly 28 years at Ford in various roles with the latest being Chief Engineer of Virtual Verification and CAE

R. Barry Caldwell – CAD Director at Rivian

Worked at Ford for 32 years with the most recent role being Chief Engineer of Design Technical Operations, Truck and SUV Applications

Michael Kaiser – Associate General Counsel at Rivian

Previously worked at Ford as In House Counsel for nearly 5 years.

Christian Prenzler – Marketing Intern at Rivian

Previously wrote for TESLARATI and frequently covered Rivian on the EV news site including an article about how the EV company hired McLaren’s top engineer

Barry Lett – Director of Advanced Concepts at Rivian

Chief Designer at McLaren

Andy Jones – Associate Director of Advanced Projects at Rivian

Chief Engineer at McLaren

Graham Meeks – Associate Director – Body Engineering

The former head of body engineer at McLaren

Yann Pissonnier – Lead Concept Engineer at Rivian

Former Design Engineering Leader at McLaren

James Chen – Vice President of Public Policy at Rivian

Former VP of Government Relations and General Counsel at Faraday Future

Nicolas Lingenfelter – Global FP&A Manager at Rivian

Former Finance Manager at Faraday Future and Senior Financial Analyst at SpaceX

Jared Clark – Vehicle Packaging Engineering Lead at Rivian

Former Vehicle Integration Staff Engineer at Tesla and spent nearly 19 years in design engineering at Ford