SMU Cox & the Maguire Energy Institute Honor Top Energy Leaders
Texas consumes more energy than any other U.S. state, both per capita and as a whole. In addition, several major oil companies have Texas headquarters, including BP, ConocoPhilips and Exxon-Mobil. Because Texas is a global energy leader, many of the business schools in the state, like the SMU Cox School of Business, maintain connections to the industry through clubs, MBA concentrations, faculty and course work.
Each year at SMU Cox, the Maguire Energy Institute honors one of the top leaders in the energy industry with the L. Frank Pitts Energy Leadership Award. The award—created in 2010—recognizes an individual who exemplifies a spirit of ethical leadership within the energy industry. This year, the award committee chose Trevor Rees-Jones, the founder and CEO of Chief Oil & Gas LLC.
About Trevor Rees-Jones, 2017 L. Frank Pitts Energy Leadership Award Recipient
Rees-Jones is the seventh recipient of the L. Frank Pitts Energy Leadership Award, which was designed to honor the legacy of L. Frank Pitts, a Texas oilman and independent oil and natural gas producer responsible for drilling more than 3,000 wells over seven decades. Rees-Jones was chosen because “he has proven himself to be one of the great modern wildcatters exhibiting a record of leadership, innovation, and ethics,” Bruce Bullock, director of the Maguire Energy Institute, said in a press release. Rees-Jones began his career in gas and oil in 1984 as an independent operator working in exploration and production. By 1994, he’d founded Chief Oil & Gas, a privately held independent oil and gas exploration and production company.
Outside of his company, Rees-Jones has been active in a variety of outreach and non-profit efforts as a member of the Board of Trustees at Dartmouth College and Texas Christian University. He also received the Methodist Health System Foundation Folsom Award for civic and community service in 2011, and is the past president of the Dallas Petroleum Club and the Dallas Hardhatters Committee.
2016 L. Frank Pitts Energy Leadership Award Recipient: Rex Tillerson
Rees-Jones joins an accomplished group of Pitts award recipients. Last year’s winner was Rex Tillerson, the former Chairman and CEO of Exxon Mobil Corporation. Tillerson was recognized for his wide-ranging impact on the energy industry. In addition to his leadership of Exxon, Tillerson’s service to the energy industry included being a member of the executive committee and former chair of the American Petroleum Institute. He also served as a trustee of the Center for Strategic and International Studies, and as a member of the Emergency Committee for American Trade.
Since receiving the Pitts Award, Tillerson has left his role as the CEO and Chairman of Exxon to become President Donald Trump’s Secretary of State. In a December 13 statement, President Trump said, “Rex knows how to manage a global enterprise, which is crucial to running a successful State Department, and his relationships with leaders all over the world are second to none.”
About the L. Frank Pitts Energy Leadership Award
The Energy Leadership Award does more than just honor the best and brightest in the oil industry. The annual awards event serves as a fundraiser to support the Maguire Energy Institute at SMU Cox School of Business and to provide MBA and BBA scholarships for students with degree concentrations in energy.
The Cox School of Business offers MBA students the opportunity to specialize with a concentration in Energy Finance, which includes such courses as Energy Project Valuation and Finance and Energy Risk Management. This year, Oklahoma City native and MBA Energy Club President Maggie Miller received a portion of the scholarship proceeds from the 2017 Pitts Energy Award event to support her graduate studies.