Chesapeake Energy Corporation (NYSE:CHK) announced the appointment of its new chief executive officer today. Robert Douglas Lawler, senior vice president of Anadarko Petroleum Corporation (NYSE:APC) accepted the position to lead the company starting June 17.
Lawler will assume the position vacated by Aubrey McClendon, who stepped down as CEO of Chesapeake Energy Corporation (NYSE:CHK) last April. A triumvirate CEO composed of the top three executives led the company on a temporary basis while looking for a permanent leader.
According to Chesapeake Energy Corporation (NYSE:CHK), the office of the chairman will be discontinued upon the assumption of Lawler as CEO of the company. Archie W. Dunham will continue to serve as non-executive chairman of the company. Steven Dixon and Domenic Dell’Osso Jr. will continue to serve as chief operating officer and chief financial officer, respectively.
Chesapeake Energy Corporation (NYSE:CHK) is confident that Lawler is capable in leading the company citing his experience as petroleum engineer with 25 years experience in the upstream exploration and production industry. During his tenure with Anadarko Petroleum Corporation (NYSE:APC), Lawler climbed the ladder of success and became a senior executive of the second independent upstream company in the United States.
Lawler is a “proven oil and gas executive with significant expertise in asset development, operations management and engineering as well as experience in corporate and strategic planning,” according to Chesapeake Energy Corporation (NYSE:CHK), the second largest natural gas producer in the country.
Chesapeake Energy Chairman Dunham said, “Doug is a talented and proven executive with the ideal skill set to lead Chesapeake forward and capitalize fully on our world-class assets. Throughout his 25 years in the upstream E&P industry, Doug has earned a reputation as a highly engaged and knowledgeable leader who delivers superior operational performance and capital efficiency.”
Dunham is confident that Chesapeake Energy Corporation (NYSE:CHK) will benefit from Lawler’s expertise in technical upstream and engineering along with his strategic and financial skills.
On the other hand, Lawler said, “I am honored and excited to be joining Chesapeake Energy with its unparalleled asset portfolio, focused management team and very talented and dedicated employees. There is significant value in Chesapeake’s asset base and the growth potential of the company is tremendous. I look forward to accelerating the momentum that the Chesapeake team has built to generate value for our shareholders in the years ahead.”
Meanwhile, Wells Fargo analyst,David Tameron commented that Lawler could “turn the page on the Aubrey McClendon saga that has consumed the story for the past year.” Chesapeake Energy Corporation (NYSE:CHK) were surrounded with controversies that led to McClendon’s resignation.
Last April, the company won a lawsuit against shareholders who alleged that it misled them by not revealing certain transactions and liabilities committed by McClendon.
A New York judge also issued a bond ruling in favor of Chesapeake Energy Corporation (NYSE:CHK) early this month allowing the company to repay some of its debts early to save $100 million.