Freeman, currently Zenith Media's head of radio, will oversee £175 million of press spend from both Zenith and Optimedia clients.
Caroline Simpson, previously Zenith's head of press, has moved to a new role in the merged management team as the director of human resources.
Oliver Joyce, Optimedia's head of press, has taken an account director role in the new team.
Freeman said: "The print medium has evolved and reached the stage where it is undersold. I still think it's a fantastic medium and am excited about the role."
Zenith Optimedia is expected to unveil a new branding, positioning and full details of its management team in March. Simon Marquis will head the agency as group chief executive with Tim Greatrex, Zenith's managing director, and Greg Turzynski, Optimedia's managing director, as joint managing directors.