Larry Nichols was recently named as the inaugural recipient of Hart Energy’s Shale Visionary Award, according to a press release issued Tuesday.
Nichols, who co-founded Oklahoma City-based Devon Energy Corporation with his father in 1971, accepted the award at Hart Energy’s annual Executive Oil Conference held in Midland.
“Today, horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing are commonplace across our industry – standard operating procedure,” said Nichols. “It’s nice to be reminded that this was not
always the case, and it started at Devon. We were trying to solve a simple problem back in 2002; how to get natural gas out of North Texas’ Barnett Shale without producing water from the Ellenberger formation beneath it. We did it, and the technique quickly revolutionized our entire industry.”
The award presentation was made by Nissa Darbonne, author, historian, and editor-at-large of Hart Energy’s Oil and Gas Investor magazine.
“Thanks to Larry Nichols’ vision, Devon looked at George Mitchell’s Barnett Shale program in 2001, bought it and took it lateral,” said Darbonne. “Devon, under Larry Nichols’ leadership, made it a world-changer with the successful introduction of the fractured lateral. Here we are today, with Devon continuing to lead the industry in new technology, honoring Larry for his leadership in a newly assured American energy future.”
Nichols served as a director at Devon from 1971 until his retirement from the board in 2016. He was named CEO in 1980, chairman in 2000, and executive chairman in 2010.
Nichols serves on the board of the National Association of Manufacturers. He is a former Chairman of the American Petroleum Institute and the American Exploration & Production Council.