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Marathon Oil Top Lawyer Is Latest to Quit in Big Oil’s Bad Year

Dec. 3, 2020, 12:25 AM

Marathon Oil Corp.’s general counsel resigned Tuesday, marking the latest legal C-suite departure in U.S. energy as the sector’s rough year draws to a close.

Reginald Hedgebeth will remain a legal adviser to Marathon through the end of the year, according to a Dec. 2 securities filing by the oil and gas company. He’s also Marathon’s chief administrative officer and corporate secretary.

Hedgebeth’s decision was “not due to any disagreement” about “operations, policies, or practices,” the Houston-based company said, thanking him for his service.

He leaves after Marathon posted four consecutive quarterly losses. The shale producer announced in early November it had a net loss of $317 million in the third quarter, partly because of reduced fuel demand during the coronavirus pandemic.

Hedgebeth’s exit follows other law department leadership changes at TechnipFMC PLC; Exxon Mobil Corp.; Weatherford International PLC; and Baker Hughes Co.

The company didn’t respond to a request for comment about Hedgebeth’s departure or its plans to replace him. Hedgebeth also didn’t respond to a request for comment.

There’s no change to his compensation as a result of his resignation, Marathon said.

The company disclosed in its most recent proxy statement that Hedgebeth received nearly $3.3 million in total compensation last year, about half of that sum in stock. Bloomberg data shows Hedgebeth owns more than $840,000 in Marathon stock.

Marathon hired Hedgebeth in 2017 from Houston-based Spectra Energy Corp., where he spent eight years as chief legal officer. Prior to that he was general counsel for now-defunct consumer electronics retailer Circuit City Corp. and vice president of legal for home improvement retailer the Home Depot Inc.

Hedgebeth, who began his legal career as an associate at King & Spalding in Atlanta, was recognized earlier this year by Savoy Magazine as one of the more influential Black executives in corporate America.

He’s also a member of the Black General Counsel Initiative, a group seeking to increase the number of Black law department leaders in the Fortune 500.

Marathon split in 2011 from former subsidiary Marathon Petroleum Corp., which in August agreed to the $21 billion sale of its Speedway gas station business to Japan’s 7-Eleven Inc.

To contact the reporter on this story: Brian Baxter in New York at bbaxter@bloomberglaw.com

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Chris Opfer at copfer@bloomberglaw.com;
John Hughes at jhughes@bloombergindustry.com

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