Trump backer Harold Hamm moves to chair of Continental Resources

Billionaire oil company CEO Harold Hamm will step up as the new executive chairman of Continental Resources at the start of 2020, the company announced Wednesday.

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Hamm, who founded Continental Resources in 1967, is a notable backer of President Trump and served as the senior energy advisor to Mitt Romney’s 2012 presidential campaign. With a net worth of $11.8 billion, Hamm is the wealthiest person in Oklahoma, Forbes reported earlier this year.

Continental Resources bills itself as “the dominant oil producer” in North Dakota’s Bakken oil field and in Oklahoma.

“Continental has never been stronger, and we are enjoying record production coupled with strong free cash flow,” Hamm said in a press release. “As most everyone knows, I have a long history of buying, not selling our stock and that will not change. We are living in the new oil era, driven by the American energy renaissance.”

Harold Hamm, founder and CEO of Continental Resources, is moving to become executive chairman of the company's board of directors. (REUTERS/Steve Sisney) 

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As Hamm steps up to his new role as executive chairman, the company has appointed William Berry as Continental’s new CEO. Berry is a former ConocoPhillips executive who has served on Continental’s board of directors since 2014. Hamm praised Berry's “ability to identify and nurture talent” and his experience in the energy market.

“He’s deeply rooted in our culture and leadership at Continental, having served on our board for the past five years,” Hamm said. “He has been my personal confidant and is a trusted advisor that has helped guide our executive team.”

Berry said Continental is “perfectly positioned for the future” because of its ability to produce “sustainable, low-cost, light sweet oil and natural gas.”

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“This is a high performance, high ambition company,” Berry said.

Jack Stark, who is Continental’s president, will also take on the role of chief operating officer.

“With Bill, Jack and our extraordinary team, we will define that new era going forward,” Hamm said. “Continental is a company with a very bright future. Our company is built to last.”

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