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Harold Hamm to speak at Montana Tech's Commencement Ceremony


Harold Hamm, the Founder, Chairman, and Chief Executive Officer of Continental Resources, one of the top 10 petroleum liquids producers in the United States, will talk to the newest class of Orediggers and all those in attendance at Montana Tech’s Commencement Ceremony about the tremendous impact Montana Tech graduates are making all over the world. Mr. Hamm will tell the graduating class of 528 his personal story of success, and his belief that Montana Tech grads are setting their paths to extraordinary futures around the world. Hamm, Governor Steve Bullock and Montana University System Regent Jeff Krauss will speak at Commencement. 

“We have alumni all over the world who have worked hard and are making a difference in industry,” said Montana Tech Chancellor Don Blackketter. “I am pleased that Mr. Hamm will be at our Commencement Ceremony to talk about the difference he feels our alumni are making. He is a true success story and we are elated to have him speak to our graduating class.”

Growing up in rural Oklahoma, Harold Hamm was the last of 13 children born to sharecroppers who never owned land. He went to work in the oil fields as a teenager and established Continental Resources in 1967 at the age of 21. He built a one-man, one-pump-truck operation into an NYSE-traded, Top 10 producer of petroleum liquids in the United States. And as a voice for America’s oil and natural gas industry, he’s on a mission to help make America energy independent within the next decade.

“We are excited to have an industry pioneer of Harold Hamm's stature speak at our Commencement Ceremony,” explained Joe McClafferty, Vice Chancellor for Development and University Relations and President of the Montana Tech Foundation. “Mr. Hamm has a great life story and has overcome many challenges with his problem solving skills and strong work ethic. He reminds me of many of our Montana Tech alumni, who many are just ordinary people who have gone on to live extraordinary lives.

In addition to his role as Founder, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Continental Resources, Mr. Hamm is Chairman of the Board of Hiland Holdings. He also co-founded and serves as Chairman of the Domestic Energy Producers Alliance, which aims to preserve the millions of jobs and billions of dollars in economic activity and tax revenues generated by onshore drilling and production activities within the United States. He is past Chairman and presently a member of the board of the Oklahoma Independent Petroleum Association and served as a founding board member of the Oklahoma Energy Resources Board. He was President of the National Stripper Well Association and Founder and Chairman of Save Domestic Oil Inc., a trade group that successfully fought OPEC in its efforts to put American oil and gas producers out of business.

A national leader in promoting health, education and energy industry advocacy, Mr. Hamm has devoted much time and resources to championing a healthy and secure future for all Americans. With the goal of finding a cure for diabetes, he has donated more than $30 million to establish the world-renowned Harold Hamm Diabetes Center at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center. The Harold Hamm Diabetes Center is at the forefront of diabetes research – inspiring progress toward a cure, education of health care professionals and families, optimal care for those living with diabetes, and effective prevention strategies. To further spark the minds of the world’s brightest scientists, he established the Harold Hamm International Prize for Biomedical Research in Diabetes, a $250,000 biennial award celebrating the scientific achievements of an outstanding researcher, team of researchers, or research institution.

In addition to eradicating diabetes, Mr. Hamm is dedicated to preparing the next generation of energy industry leaders. In 2012, he helped establish the Harold Hamm School of Geology and Geological Engineering at the University of North Dakota. He has also funded numerous education initiatives across the nation, including college scholarships, classroom technology, and school capital campaigns.

In 2011, Mr. Hamm joined Bill and Melinda Gates and Warren Buffet in signing The Giving Pledge, committing to give away the majority of his wealth during his lifetime. Forbes Magazine has ranked Mr. Hamm No. 35 on “The Forbes 400” list of the richest people in America and No. 90 out of 1,426 on its list of “The World’s Billionaires.”

Mr. Hamm has received numerous awards and recognition for his contributions. In 2012, he was named one of TIME Magazine’s “100 Most Influential People in the World” for his creation of thousands of jobs in the oil industry and continuous support of education and diabetes research. He was inducted into the Oklahoma Hall of Fame in 2011, named the International Energy Policy Conference “Energy Advocate of the Year” in 2009, and named the Ernst & Young “Entrepreneur of the Year” in 2007.