James R. Moffett
1997 Inductee into American Mining Hall of Fame
James R. Moffett was born in Houma, Louisiana, in 1938 and raised in Houston, Texas. He received a Bachelor of Science degree with special honors in Geology from the University of Texas at Austin in 1961 and a Master of Science in Geology from Tulane University in 1963.
From 1964 through 1969, he was a consulting geologist. In 1969, he and two associates founded McMoRan Oil & Gas Co., which developed into one of America's leading independent oil and gas companies. In 1981, Moffett put together the merger of McMoRan Inc. and Freeport, one of the world's leading natural resource companies. Moffett was named chairman and CEO in 1984.
Moffett is presently Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc. He also serves as President Commissioner for P.T. Freeport Indonesia Company. Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc. is engaged in the exploration, mining and milling of copper, gold, and silver in Irian Jaya, Indonesia, where their operations rank among the largest in the world. In addition, the company is engaged in the smelting and refining of copper concentrates in Spain. Moffett serves on the board of numerous professional, civic, and philanthropic organizations. He has received many awards, including the “Distinguished Americans Award” from the Horatio Alger Association in 1990.