Less than two months ago corporate raider Carl Icahn and other mercenary “stockholders” of Chesapeake Energy (with the help of complicit reporters at Bloomberg and Reuters) unceremoniously dumped Aubrey McClendon, founder of Chesapeake, as CEO (see McClendon Exits Chesapeake, Well-Bonused “Friends” Replace Him). Yesterday, Chesapeake announced they’ve hired an executive from rival drilling company Anadarko Petroleum to lead them. Three of Aubrey’s closest “friends” that together were running the company via an “Office of the Chairman”–Archie Dunham, Steve Dixon and Dom Dell’Osso–will now go back to their regularly scheduled jobs (and piles of money). Et tu, Brute?
Robert Douglas (“Doug”) Lawler, 46, until this week, was senior vice president of international and deepwater operations at Anadarko. On June 17, he will join Chessy as CEO and a member of the Board of Directors. Doug is a petroleum engineer with an MBA. Our advice to Doug when he arrives at the corporate board room at Chessy: Watch your back when Carl Icahn is in the room. And you darned well better produce a dramatic turnaround on the balance sheet, quickly, or you too will be histoire.