Lord Browne of Madingley, former CEO, BP plc, will deliver the commencement speech at the diploma award ceremony at Stanford Graduate School of Business on June 15, 2019.
Lord Browne spent 41 years at the oil and gas company BP plc, joining as a university apprentice in 1966. He held a variety of exploration and production posts in North America and the United Kingdom, and was appointed group chief executive in 1995. Lord Browne led BP through a period of major expansion, including the BP/Amoco merger in 1998, and took the company into the renewable and alternative energy sectors. He left BP in 2007.
He is currently executive chairman of L1 Energy, an oil and gas investment firm. Under his leadership, L1 Energy is a partner in the creation of Wintershall DEA, which will be Europe’s largest independent oil and gas company.
Lord Browne is a director of IHS Markit and Pattern Energy, and chairman of Huawei UK, Stanhope Capital, and the Accenture Global Energy Board. He serves on the advisory boards of a number of big data technology companies and is chairman of the Francis Crick Institute, the Donmar Warehouse theatre, and the Courtauld Institute of Art.
“Throughout his career, Lord Browne has demonstrated his unwavering commitment to leadership and innovation at the organizations he has served,” said Jonathan Levin, Philip H. Knight Professor and Dean, Stanford GSB. “His ability to bring people together in service to his community, Stanford, and the corporate world is inspiring to us all. We are thrilled to have him share his perspectives with this year’s graduating class.”
Lord Browne was a Class of 1981 Sloan Fellow, renamed the Stanford MSx Program in 2013, and received an MS in management. He gave his seminal 1997 speech at Stanford’s Frost Amphitheater, where he broke ranks with the oil industry and addressed how BP planned to combat climate change. He received the Stanford GSB Arbuckle Award in 2001. He is a member of Stanford GSB’s alumni chapter in the United Kingdom and Stanford Pride, and sits on the Global Advisory Board of the Knight-Hennessy Scholars Program at Stanford University. He will be the first MSx alumnus to deliver graduation remarks since the inauguration of the alumni speaker program in 2010.
“The alumni speaker program provides a unique opportunity for graduating students to learn from top global business leaders,” said Mike Hochleutner, director of the Stanford MSx Program. “Lord Browne has demonstrated the resilience and impact over a long career of leadership that we aim to instill in our graduates.”
In addition to his MS from Stanford GSB, Lord Browne also holds a degree in natural sciences from Cambridge. His interests include 16th- to 18th-century illustrated Italian books, pre-Columbian art, contemporary art, music, opera, the theatre, and Venice. He is the author of five books; his most recent work, Make, Think, Imagine: Engineering the Future of Civilisation will be published in May 2019.