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Oklahoma City-based Chesapeake Energy's search for new CEO compared to replacing football coach

CEO Aubrey McClendon's departure at Oklahoma City-based Chesapeake Energy Corp. sets the stage for a search for a replacement.
by Adam Wilmoth Modified: January 31, 2013 at 7:35 pm •  Published: January 31, 2013

It's not unlike a football program relying on one coach to attract boosters and build a program and moving to a different coach to succeed in that new environment.

Phillip Weiss of Argus Research drew a similar picture, saying companies have life cycles.

“The same person that leads it through one stage of its life cycle is not necessarily the one that should lead it through the next,” Weiss said Tuesday.

Weiss went further in describing what kind of chief he would like to see for Chesapeake going forward.

“My preference would be somebody with a good financial background with a solid No. 2 guy who understands the industry from the science side,” he said.

In other words, Chesapeake most needs a coach who runs a clean program.

If necessary, that new coach can rely on strong coordinators to help the team succeed on the field, but the first priority is to make sure the program stays in compliance.

The Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday that Chesapeake approached Anadarko Petroleum Executive Chairman Jim Hackett, but that he turned down the job.

Hackett is the former Devon Energy Corp. executive who led Anadarko's takeover of former Oklahoma City-based Kerr-McGee Corp.

If the report is correct, maybe it's for the best.

That could be similar to former Oklahoma State and current Louisiana State head coach Les Miles taking the reins for the Sooners.

by Adam Wilmoth
Energy Editor
Adam Wilmoth returned to The Oklahoman as energy editor in 2012 after working for four years in public relations. He previously spent seven years as a business reporter at The Oklahoman, including five years covering the state's energy sector....
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