All posts by Team Pickens

A new beginning for Mesa Vista Ranch

Growing up in Holdenville, Oklahoma, I once walked five miles from town down to the Canadian River – and back – to earn a Boy Scout Merit Badge.

Today, some 80 years later, that very same Canadian River remains a prominent part of my life. It forms the northern boundary of my picturesque 65,000-acre Mesa Vista Ranch in the northeast corner of the Texas Panhandle. The ranch’s name commemorates the stunning mesa views to the north that mark the southern edge of the Great Plains.

Years ago, at a high school commencement speech for my grandson, I offered to trade the Mesa Vista (and my jet and my billion-dollar bank account) for their place as graduating seniors with a lifetime of dreams and accomplishments to come.

Today, however, trading my ranch is off the table. Selling it is not. I’m officially putting it on the market. Asking price: $250 million.

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Honoring and Supporting Veterans Year-Round

This Veterans Day, we reflect on the price of freedom and honor those who have served this great country in uniform. But it’s important to remind ourselves that men and women in the military honor this country with selfless acts every day, and veterans are veterans every other day on the calendar. We ought to be helping them in every way we can, as often as we can.

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Congratulations to Mesa Natural Gas Solutions on its 2017 Freedom Award

A handful of companies from across the country recently flew out to Washington, D.C. for an award ceremony at the Pentagon. They were recipients of the 2017 Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award, which honors companies that exceed federal requirements for their military and veteran employees by offering generous policies and continuous benefits. I’m proud to be involved with one of the honored companies, Mesa Natural Gas Solutions.

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Philanthropic Competition: The Pickens-Abraham Foundation

My mother, Grace Molonson Pickens, always told me to never forget where I came from. I was born in Holdenville, a small Oklahoma town, and moved to the Texas Panhandle when I was a teen. So both have always been part of who I am, and I’ve donated a good deal of money in both states.

But I’m a guy who believes in challenges over handouts. And I always love a little competition. I don’t want the other guy to do badly; I just want to challenge those I give to to have some skin in the game.

That’s true for me both in business and in other areas of my life. So when it comes to philanthropy, I believe a little competitive spirit can create better outcomes for everyone.

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Forbes at 100: You Can Be Successful If You Have A Plan

Forbes has released a special centennial issue featuring “The World’s 100 Greatest Living Business Minds.” Over the past century, Forbes has been recording the most pivotal moments in business, inspiring the doers to help change the world for the better. Now, they are recognizing innovators who have left a lasting impact on business and the world. Today, I am very proud and honored to find myself on their list.

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An Open Letter To America’s Governors

I have always been for an all-the-above approach to this nation’s energy policy, but that doesn’t mean we need to jam a square peg in a round hole. Solar, wind, electric and natural gas all have their place, but it must be in accordance with an appropriate application. President Obama tried to grease that square peg into a round hole, choosing energy favorites with a hefty $2.7 billion, supplied by Volkswagen. Now, there is an opportunity for the states to correct that mistake and implement a more effective energy plan.

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Saluting Mesa Natural Gas Solutions for Supporting Military Service Members

I have a great affinity for the word “Mesa.” I grew Mesa Petroleum into one of the nation’s largest independent oil companies. My 68,000-acre Mesa Vista Ranch, in the far northeast corner of the Texas Panhandle, is my favorite place on earth. A number of my other concerns, including Mesa Natural Gas Solutions, have also born the name.

U.S. military veterans founded Mesa Natural Gas Solutions and comprise more than 60 percent of its employees. The company has more than 200 years of combined military service and more than 30 overseas deployments in its ranks, all the way up to the top. Mesa’s President and CEO, Scott Gromer, retired after 23 plus years of military service, including two unit commands, three deployments in Support of Operation Iraqi Freedom, and as Major in the Wyoming Army National Guard. Mesa not only hires, employs, and promotes both veterans and active duty service members, but the company also supports them however it can.

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Accepting (or Embracing) Mortality

The other day, my team uncovered some videos of the news interviews I had done back in the 1980s. Those were heady times. It was the start of the corporate takeover and shareholder rights era, and I was not just in the thick of it, I was driving it. And communicating clearly and effectively was critical to our success.

Strong communication has always been my core asset. I’ve always believed you can trace every problem to a lack of communication or lack of clarity in communication.

These days, I sometimes find myself literally at a loss for words. Over the Christmas holiday, I had several strokes. But with a little determination and some aggressive speech therapy, I regained 90 percent of my speech.

However, last week, I had a Texas-sized fall — one that required hospitalization. I am still mentally strong, and I comprehend and process information like I did before the incident. It’s just a little hard to find the words I’m looking for to speak clearly. Speech therapy will fix that, I’m confident.

Just as I exercise my body daily I will exercise my brain and continue with rigorous speech therapy to regain what I can. I am always up for a good challenge.

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