Callon Petroleum Co. has appointed Joseph Gatto Jr. as chief executive officer and L. Richard Flury as non-executive chairman, succeeding Fred Callon, former chief executive officer and chairman, following his unexpected death on May 24. Gatto will continue performing his duties as president and chief financial officer. The remainder of the company’s leadership team will continue in their present roles. No changes are anticipated in the company’s day-to-day business activities, it said in a release.
Gatto worked closely with Fred Callon since 2012 as the company executed an aggressive growth strategy in the Permian Basin in Texas. Since the beginning of 2016, Callon has completed more than $1 billion in acquisitions and $2 billion in debt and equity raises, nearly tripling the company’s acreage position and building a solid financial position for the future.
Gatto commented, “I am humbled by the opportunity to continue to build upon Fred’s legacy and fulfill his vision for Callon Petroleum. I am honored to have been chosen by the Board to continue my strong partnership with Callon’s chief operating officer, Gary Newberry as together we lead our experienced management team in the execution of our growth initiatives that we believe will create differentiated value for our shareholders. We are all committed to ensuring a smooth transition and to honoring Fred’s memory through a continued commitment to our core values. We will always be profoundly grateful for his friendship and leadership, and he will be deeply missed by our organization as well as the oil and gas industry. During this time, all of our thoughts are with Fred’s family and we will do everything we can to support them.”
Prior to joining Callon, Gatto held various positions in the financial advisory and energy investment banking groups of Merrill Lynch & Co., Barclays Capital, Merrill Lynch Commodities Inc. and MarchWire Capital LLC, which he founded. He graduated from Cornell University with a bachelor of science degree and The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania with an MBA.
Flury has served on the board since 2004 and currently serves on the company’s audit, compensation and strategic planning and reserves committees. Prior to his retirement, Flury spent over 30 years with Amoco Corp., and later, BP p.l.c., most recently as chief executive for gas and power and renewables. He is also a director and the non-executive chairman of Chicago Bridge and Iron Co., N.V.