2014 Archives

EnCap Investments co-founder honored with Pitts Energy Leadership Award

SMU Cox awards luncheon garners record-breaking funds

December 12, 2014

David Miller
David Miller

DALLAS (SMU) — The Maguire Energy Institute at SMU Cox School of Business honored David Miller, co-founder and managing partner of EnCap Investments, L.P., with the 2014 L. Frank Pitts Energy Leadership Award at a sold-out luncheon ceremony on Friday, December 12, at the Cox School’s Collins Center. 

The event raised $375,000 to support the Institute, as well as scholarships for students seeking to pursue careers in the energy industry. The Energy Leadership Award committee selected Miller, who holds a BBA and an MBA from SMU Cox, as someone who, like the late oilman for whom the energy award was named, embodies the spirit of entrepreneurship, ethical leadership and energy industry innovation.

“The Institute is proud to honor David Miller with this prestigious award,” said Bruce Bullock, director of the Maguire Energy Institute. “Throughout his 40-year career, David has an unsurpassed record of achievement as an innovative leader in oil and gas and energy finance. His contributions extend far beyond the industry to SMU, the Cox School of Business, our students and the Dallas community. As a former partner of Frank Pitts, he exemplifies the qualities and values that are the basis for this award.”

A Dallas native, Miller earned his BBA from SMU in 1972. He was a three-year starter on the Mustang basketball team, which became the Southwest Conference Co-Champion in his senior year. His ability as a leader was recognized early on with the Bobby James Award for leadership, scholarship and basketball achievement. After completing his MBA from SMU in 1973, Miller began his professional career as an energy lender with Republic Bank Dallas, where he ultimately served as vice president and manager of the bank’s wholly owned subsidiary, Republic Energy Finance Corp.

In 1987, he partnered with legendary oilman Frank Pitts in the formation of the PMC Reserve Acquisition Company. In 1988, Miller and three former Republic Bank colleagues co-founded EnCap Investments, L.P., a private equity firm focused on investments in early-stage oil and gas companies. Since its inception, EnCap has raised 18 funds and managed more than $21 billion of capital for some 275 U.S. and foreign institutional investors. According to Private Equity International, EnCap today represents one of the 10 largest private equity firms in the world.

For the past 10 years, Miller has been a member of the National Petroleum Council, an advisory body to the U.S. Secretary of Energy. He serves as a member of the Maguire Energy Institute Advisory Board, and he was recently inducted into the Rocky Mountain Oil and Gas Hall of Fame. Miller is a member of the SMU Board of Trustees and currently chairs the Executive Board of the SMU Cox School of Business. Both the University and the Cox School have honored him as a Distinguished Alumnus. He will be inducted into the Texas Business Hall of Fame in the spring of 2015. Miller is the current chairman of the Board of Goodwill Industries of Dallas. Numerous other charities benefit from his individual involvement and the support of the Miller Family Foundation.

Miller is the fifth recipient of the L. Frank Pitts Energy Leadership Award. The first award was presented in 2010 to Ray L. Hunt, chairman and CEO of Hunt Oil Company and chairman, CEO and president of Hunt Consolidated, Inc. The 2011 recipient was J. Larry Nichols, now retired co-founder and executive chairman of Devon Energy Corporation. Mark Papa, now retired chairman and CEO of EOG Resources, Inc., received the award in 2012. Last year, Scott Sheffield, chairman and CEO of Pioneer Natural Resources Company, was the honoree.

The Maguire Energy Institute, named in honor of oilman and co-founder Cary M. Maguire, just celebrated the 40th anniversary of its founding. The L. Frank Pitts Energy Leadership Award was created in 2010 to honor the legacy of another Texas oilman, independent oil and natural gas producer L. Frank Pitts, who participated in the drilling of more than 3,000 wells over almost seven decades, and was a business partner and mentor to David Miller. The late oilman, like Miller, served as a member of the Maguire Energy Institute Advisory Board. Pitts’ daughter, Linda Pitts Custard, is a former member of the SMU Board of Trustees and an alumna of SMU Cox, and she serves on the Award Event Committee for the Pitts Energy Leadership Award Luncheon.

The annual event serves as a fundraiser to support the Maguire Energy Institute, as well as its MBA and BBA scholarships for students with degree concentrations in energy. This year’s event yielded more support than any previous year. A portion of the $375,000 raised by the 2014 event will help support the educational goals of Stuart Duenner, who will complete his BBA in May 2016, and William LaFuze, Jr., who will complete his MBA in May 2015.

About SMU Cox

Edwin L. Cox School of Business at Southern Methodist UniversityThe Cox School of Business, originally established in Dallas in 1920 on the campus of Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, and was named in honor of benefactor Edwin L. Cox in 1978. 

SMU Cox offers a full range of highly-ranked undergraduate and graduate business education programs:  BBA, Full-Time MBA, Fast Track MBA, Professional MBA (PMBA), Executive MBA (EMBA), JD/MBA, MA/MBA, Master of Science (MS) in Accounting, MS in Business Analytics, MS in Finance, MS in Management, MS in Sport Management, as well as Executive Education and multiple certificate programs

The school also offers a number of unique resources and activities for students, including the Business Leadership Center (BLC); the Caruth Institute for Entrepreneurship; the Folsom Institute for Real Estate; the Maguire Energy Institute; the Global Leadership Program; and the Associate Board Executive Mentoring Program, as well as an international alumni network with chapters in more than 20 countries.