O. C. "Cliff" Davis

Natural Gas Industry Leader O. C. "Cliff" Davis, an innovator and leader of the natural gas industry who helped lead the industry through decontrol of natural gas prices and introduced natural gas storage fields to the industry died peacefully April 23, 2006 just 14 days short of his 86th birthday at his home in Naples, Florida. 

Mr. Davis was born in Rosiclare, Illinois and raised in Montana where he went to high school in Glascow. 

During World War II he served as a Captain in the Army Air Corps where he won battle stars in the Pacific Theatre of Operations. He began his distinguished industrial career by graduating from Texas A & M College in 1947 with a degree in mechanical engineering. That same year he joined Natural Gas Pipeline of America as an engineer and became its president in 1969. In 1977, he was named Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the pipeline company's parent firm, Peoples Energy Corporation. In 1981, he was the principle architect of splitting off the pipeline company from Peoples Energy Corporation into an independent company, MidCon Corp. Upon formation of MidCon he was elected Chairman, President, and Chief Executive Officer. His exemplary leadership of MidCon earned him Financial World's Bronze Award for Chief Executive of the Year in 1983. In another transitional move for the pipeline company, he helped arrange a merger of MidCon with Occidental Petroleum Corp. in 1986. After the merger, he remained Chairman and CEO of MidCon, but was also an Executive Vice President and Director of Occidental from 1987 until his retirement in 1991. Mr. Davis was a long-time director of the American Gas Association and as chairman of the organization in 1984 helped guide the industry through price decontrol earning him the Gas Man of the Year award. His leadership was not limited to the gas industry. He served as a director of Harris Bank for nine years, and also held long-term directorships in AMSED Industries, Inc and the Chicago Crime Commission. He served on the Citizens Board of the University of Chicago, the Business Advisory Council of the Chicago Urban League, was a member of the Northwestern University Associates, and served on the National Petroleum Council under President Nixon. An avid outdoorsman, hunting was one of Mr. Davis' two great passions, the other was golf. He continued to pursue both well into his 80's. 

He is survived by his wife Sherry Ann, his sons Henry and Jon, and grandchildren Deniz, Clint, Derya, Andrea, and Kyle. 

There was a viewing and a memorial service at Naples Memorial Funeral Home and Cemetery, 525 111th Avenue N., Naples Florida. The viewing was from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Wednesday, April 26th, and the memorial service was at 12 noon on Thursday, April 27th.

Source: San Diego Union-Tribune, The (CA) - April 28, 2006

 

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