Freeport-McMoRan Inc., Phoenix, has named Gerald J. Ford as the company’s nonexecutive chairman. Ford is an independent director for Freeport-McMoRan and chairman of Hilltop Holdings Inc. Executive Chairman James R. Moffett has stepped down, and Richard Adkerson will remain chief executive officer.
Primarily an international mining company, Freeport-McMoRan holds significant oil and natural gas properties, including in the deepwater Gulf of Mexico, on and offshore California, in the Haynesville shale, and also a Lower Tertiary-Cretaceous gas trend onshore South Louisiana.
Moffett was named chairman emeritus and will become a consultant to the board.
He cofounded McMoRan Oil & Gas Co. in 1969 along with two associates, and the independent operator eventually merged with Freeport Minerals Co. In 1988, the company discovered copper and gold in Indonesia’s Grasberg mine.