Harold Hamm

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Harold Hamm
Harold Hamm 2012 Shankbone.JPG
Hamm at the 2012 Time 100 gala
Born (1945-12-11) December 11, 1945 (age 68)
Lexington, Oklahoma
Occupation CEO of Continental Resources (since 1967)
Net worth Increase US$ 12.4 billion (September 2013)[1]
Political party
Spouse(s) Judith Ann (divorced in 1987)[3]
Sue Ann Hamm (née Arnall)
Children 5 (three with Judith Ann and two with Sue Ann)[4][5]
Awards Oklahoma Hall of Fame (2011)[6]
The Continental Towers in Enid, Oklahoma.

Harold Hamm (born December 11, 1945) is an American oilman who is best known for pioneering the development of the large shale oil resources of the Bakken formation. [7] In 2012 Hamm was ranked by Forbes magazine as the 30th richest person in America and 76th richest person in the world, with a net worth estimated at $11 billion.[8] In 2012, presidential candidate Mitt Romney named Hamm as his energy advisor,[9] and thereafter Hamm made substantial monetary and advisory contributions to the election effort.

Early life and education[edit]

Hamm was born in Lexington, Oklahoma, the 13th and youngest child of Oklahoma cotton sharecroppers.[10] Hamm is a graduate of Enid High School. His highest level of education is a high school diploma.[11][12]


Hamm is a key player in Hiland Partners and Hiland Holdings[13] as well as the oil-exploration company Continental Resources, Oklahoma's fourth largest public company.[14][15][16] Continental Resources, moved from the Continental Towers in Enid, Oklahoma to Oklahoma City, Oklahoma in 2012.[14] Hamm was inducted into the Oklahoma Hall of Fame in 2011.[6]

He worked his way up from pumping gas and repairing cars[11] to becoming CEO of his own billion-dollar company. Harold Hamm has been the CEO of Continental Resources since 1967,[17] when the company was called Shelly Dean Oil Company.[18] Hamm and Continental Resources pioneered the development of the Bakken Oil Field in Montana and North Dakota. Hamm became a billionaire, and Continental Resources became a major oil producer. [7] [19] Hamm was given honorary degrees from Northwestern Oklahoma State University and the University of Oklahoma.[20]

The Harold Hamm Diabetes Center at the University of Oklahoma was named after Hamm, who has diabetes Type 2.[20] Hamm's foundation, the Harold and Sue Ann Hamm Foundation donated 10 million dollars to create the center.[18]

Hamm is a member of the Global Leadership Council at Concordia College, Moorhead, Offutt School of Business. [21]

Political involvement[edit]

Shortly after being named energy advisor to the Romney campaign in March 2012, Hamm donated $985,000 to the pro-Romney super PAC Restore Our Future.[2] On the eve of the convention, Hamm was credited in a report with being among oil and energy executives consulted in a plan to devolve permitting on Federal lands to the state where the land is located. Romney's proposal, which was launched the same week as two industry fundraisers netted $10 million for the campaign, was seen as going beyond roots in the Sagebrush Rebellion of the 1970s and 1980s, as well as the sometimes controversial permitting policies of the George W. Bush administration in the 2000s.[22]

Personal life[edit]

Hamm divorced his first wife, Judith Ann, in 1987. They had three children together.[10]

In April 1988, Hamm married Sue Ann Hamm (née Arnall) with whom he has two grown daughters, Jane and Hillary.[23] Sue Ann Hamm is an economist and lawyer.[24] She has had executive roles at Continental Resources and filed for divorce on May 19, 2012.[10][25] Harold Hamm has said that he separated from Sue Ann in 2005.[26]

Hamm lives in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.[27] He owns homes in Enid, Oklahoma and Nichols Hills, Oklahoma among others.[28][29][30]

Hamm has Type II diabetes.[31][32]


  1. ^ Forbes; The World's Billionaires – Harold Hamm September 2013
  2. ^ a b "Top Romney Adviser Also Gives Big To Super PAC". Huffington Post. May 23, 2012. 
  3. ^ http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/03/21/us-hamm-billionaire-divorce-idUSBRE92K10E20130321
  4. ^ Reuters: "Exclusive: Looming divorce could threaten oil baron's empire" By Brian Grow and Joshua Schneyer March 21, 2013
  5. ^ http://blogs.wsj.com/washwire/2012/09/24/harold-hamm-makes-big-gift-to-university-of-north-dakota/
  6. ^ a b "Harold Hamm selected to Oklahoma Hall of Fame", Enid News & Eagle, November 12, 2011
  7. ^ a b Gregory Zuckerman, The Frackers : the outrageous inside story of the new billionaire wildcatters. 2013, Portfolio Penguin. ISBN 9781591846451
  8. ^ Harold Hamm - Forbes, Forbes.com. Accessed March 2012.
  9. ^ Carroll, Joe (March 1, 2012). "Romney Names Oklahoma Oil Billionaire Hamm as Energy Adviser". Bloomberg. 
  10. ^ a b c Brian Grow and Joshua Schneyer, "Looming divorce could threaten oil baron's empire", Reuters.com, March 21, 2013. Retrieved March 21, 2013.
  11. ^ a b Reiger, Andy, "Hamm to receive honorary degrees", The Enid News & Eagle, May 11, 2009
  12. ^ http://www.forbes.com/lists/2010/10/billionaires-2010_Harold-Hamm_AKPG.html
  13. ^ "Hiland Partners". HilandPartners.com. Retrieved 2013-03-23. 
  14. ^ a b Allen, Cindy, "This is not a drill", The Enid News & Eagle, March 26, 2011
  15. ^ Vardi, Nathan (February 2, 2009). "The Last American Wildcatter". Forbes. 
  16. ^ http://www.tradingmarkets.com/news/stock-alert/aaon_ctc_ppd_3-oklahoma-small-firms-make-forbes-100-list-1260490.html[dead link]
  17. ^ "Harold Hamm: Executive Profile & Biography", Business Week
  18. ^ a b "Harold Hamm Biography", 2010 New Horizons in Oil & Gas Conference
  19. ^ "How North Dakota Became Saudi Arabia", interview of Harold Hamm, The Wall Street Journal, Oct. 1, 2011
  20. ^ a b "Harold Hamm: The Business of Benevolence", Distinctly Oklahoma, November 2010
  21. ^ "Global Leadership Council". Retrieved 17 March 2012. 
  22. ^ Lipton, Eric, and Clifford Krauss, "Giving Reins to the States Over Drilling", New York Times, August 23, 2012. Retrieved 2012-08-26.
  23. ^ Reuters: "Exclusive: Looming divorce could threaten oil baron's empire" By Brian Grow and Joshua Schneyer March 21, 2013
  24. ^ http://www.forbes.com/sites/clareoconnor/2013/03/23/oil-billionaire-harold-hamms-divorce-could-be-worlds-most-expensive-at-over-5-billion/
  25. ^ http://www.cnbc.com/id/100582253
  26. ^ http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/03/21/us-hamm-billionaire-divorce-idUSBRE92K10E20130321
  27. ^ http://www.forbes.com/profile/harold-hamm/
  28. ^ http://blogs.lawyers.com/2013/07/no-prenup-could-cost-hamm-billions/
  29. ^ http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/03/21/us-hamm-billionaire-divorce-idUSBRE92K10E20130321
  30. ^ http://www.enidnews.com/localnews/x1499309455/Continental-CEO-Hamm-wife-Sue-Ann-are-divorcing
  31. ^ http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/03/21/us-hamm-billionaire-divorce-idUSBRE92K10E20130321
  32. ^ http://www.forbes.com/forbes/2010/1011/rich-list-10-passions-pursuits-harold-hamm-on-diabetes.html