Michael Armand Hammer

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Michael Armand Hammer
Born (1955-09-08) September 8, 1955 (age 63)
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Alma materUniversity of San Diego
New York University
  • Businessman
  • philanthropist
OrganizationOccidental Petroleum, Armand Hammer Foundation, Hammer International Foundation, Oral Roberts University
Dru Ann Mobley
(m. 1985; div. 2012)
Children2, including Armie
RelativesJulian Hammer (father)
Armand Hammer (grandfather)

Michael Armand Hammer (born September 8, 1955) is an American businessman and philanthropist. He is the son of Julian Armand Hammer and the grandson of industrialist Armand Hammer.[1] Best known for his ties to Occidental Petroleum, the company of his late grandfather, Hammer oversees the Hammer International Foundation, the Armand Hammer Foundation, and owns numerous businesses that include Hammer Galleries, and Hammer Productions, a television and film production company located in Los Angeles, California.

Hammer is the founder of Grace Christian Academy in the Cayman Islands and Christian Communications Association, a Christian radio station also in the Cayman Islands. He sits on the Board of Directors and the Executive Committee for the Los Angeles Dream Center and Pepperdine University, and also serves on the Investment Committee and Board of Reference for Oral Roberts University.[2]

Early life[edit]

Michael Armand Hammer was born on September 8, 1955, in Los Angeles, California.[2] He is the son of Glenna Sue (née Ervin) and Julian Armand Hammer,[3] and the only grandson of Armand Hammer.[4] His paternal grandfather's parents were Ukrainian-Jewish immigrants. His paternal grandmother, Russian-born actress Olga Von Root, was the daughter of a czarist general.[5][6] His mother was a native of Texas.

Hammer attended university at the University of San Diego, where he graduated with a degree in Business Administration in 1978. He later graduated from New York University's Stern School of Business in 1982, with a Master of Business Administration degree.[7]


Before becoming involved with his grandfather's company, Occidental Petroleum, Hammer served in different roles at the New York City securities and investment banking firm Kidder, Peabody & Co.,[8] which later was sold to PaineWebber, which ultimately merged with UBS AG in November 2000. He joined Occidental Petroleum in 1982 and served in various capacities in the company's facilities in Texas, Oklahoma, London, and Oman. In 1985, he moved to the corporation's headquarters in Los Angeles where he became a vice president, He shortly thereafter became a member of the Board of Directors and the Executive Committee, and served in those capacities until his departure from the company in 1991,[2] not long after the death of Armand Hammer.

Since leaving Occidental, Hammer has worked with several companies, including OnVANTAGE, Inc. in 2000,[9] which was later acquired by the company StarCite, Inc., and Avenue Entertainment Group as a member of the Board following an investment in the company by Hammer International in 1999.[8]

As of the late 2000s, Hammer is chairman and CEO of the Armand Hammer Foundation, as well as president and CEO of the Hammer International Foundation. Additionally, Hammer is also the chairman of Hammer Galleries in New York City, and the owner and chairman of 8-31 Holdings, Inc. He is also involved with the television and film producing company Hammer Productions, based in Los Angeles. He founded Grace Christian Academy and the Christian Communications Association, a not-for-profit Christian radio station, in the Cayman Islands. He has served with many charitable, professional, and civic organizations, among them the Long-Range Planning Committee of the Western Los Angeles County Council of the Boy Scouts of America, the Development Committee of the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank, the Board of Overseers for Columbia University School of Business, the Starbright Foundation, and the Honorary Advisory Board for Stop Cancer.[2] He is also the Chairman Emeritus of The Hammer Museum of Art in Los Angeles, and is on the Board of Trustees of the Santa Barbara Museum of Art.

Personal life[edit]

Hammer married Dru Ann Mobley of Tulsa, Oklahoma, on January 12, 1985, at the First Methodist Church in Tulsa.[10] Dru graduated from Oklahoma State University and served on many boards, including the Los Angeles Dream Center where she teaches Bible Study and is involved with programs geared toward discipleship. She also serves on the Board of Directors for Joyce Meyer Ministries.[11] Hammer became a Christian upon marrying his wife,[12] and is a benefactor of several Christian organizations dedicated to evangelism, including Jews for Jesus, Italy for Christ, Don Dennis Ministries, Marty Goetz Ministries, Mike Barber Ministries, and the Douglas L. Mobley Foundation (named after his wife's father, a former real estate developer and banker turned Christian evangelist).[13][14]

Before they divorced after 27 years of marriage, Michael and Dru Hammer had two children:[11]

  • Armie Hammer (born 1986), an actor
  • Viktor Hammer (born 1988), a businessman/philanthropist.[11]

He formerly resided in a Paul Williams-designed, 1920s Tudor-style manse, that was featured in films and television shows, including the Bells of St. Mary's, Rocky V, and others. It had erroneously been dubbed "Wayne Manor," as it was thought the house had been used in the Batman TV show, but in fact an adjacent residence was the site used for Batman. The historic mansion was destroyed by fire in October 2005 during a renovation by the Hammers.[15][16] He currently resides in Montecito, California.[citation needed]


  1. ^ "Grant's Land" Forbes.com (United States.), May 8, 2009.
  2. ^ a b c d "Board of Trustees" Oral Roberts University (Tulsa, OK.), May 8, 2009.
  3. ^ Epstein, Edward Jay (1998). Dossier: the secret history of Armand Hammer. Orion Business. p. 187. ISBN 0-7528-1386-2.
  4. ^ "Armand Hammer Dies at 92; Executive Forged Soviet Ties" The New York Times, May 8, 2009.
  5. ^ Considine, Bob (1975). The remarkable life of Dr. Armand Hammer. Harper & Row. p. 75. ISBN 0-06-010836-3.
  6. ^ "Reaches Into Her Gypsy Songbag For Tunes To Give To Posterity". Meriden Daily Journal. 1934-03-06. Retrieved 2011-05-18.
  7. ^ "Miss Mobley Has Nuptials In Oklahoma The New York Times, January 13, 1985.
  8. ^ a b "Michael Hammer to Join Avenue Entertainment Group Board; Hammer International Takes Stake in Company" Findarticles.com (Los Angeles, CA), May 8, 2009.
  9. ^ "OnVANTAGE, Inc. Appoints New Director, Michael Armand Hammer" Encyclopedia.com (San Jose, California), May 8, 2009.
  10. ^ "Miss Mobley Has Nuptials In Oklahoma" New York Times (New York City), May 8, 2009.
  11. ^ a b c "Board Members" Joyce Meyer Ministries (St. Louis, Missouri), May 8, 2009.
  12. ^ Pentecostal evangel. Assemblies of God. General Council / General Council of the Assemblies of God (4313–4337). 1997. Michael Hammer, 42, told The Washington Post that he became a Christian after meeting and marrying former fitness instructor Dru Ann Mobley in 1985 Missing or empty |title= (help)
  13. ^ Orlando Sentinel: "Hammer funds routed to evangelical groups" January 4, 1997 | "Michael Hammer, 42, says he became a Christian after meeting and marrying former fitness instructor Dru Ann Mobley in 1985."
  14. ^ York Daily Record: "Bank Head Turns To Faith Healing" January 10, 1977 | "Before he got religion, Douglas L. Mobley was board chairman of a downtown bank, believed money was made for making more money and drove himself as hard as any heart attack-prone executive. Now, he's given most of it up for evangelism and to heal though faith"
  15. ^ "Mansion" Archived 2011-06-29 at the Wayback Machine April 25, 2010.
  16. ^ "PreserveLA - Historic Preservation in Los Angeles - Historic Mansion Destroyed".