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Murphy Oil Management Shuffle Follows Plan to Leave El Dorado

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Murphy Oil Corp., battered by the bear petroleum market and moving its headquarters from El Dorado to Houston as a cost-saver, announced management changes Thursday, including the retirement of the counsel who oversaw details of the corporate spinoff of Murphy USA in 2013.

Walter K. Compton, executive vice president and general counsel, will depart after 32 years at the company, which announced its corporate headquarters move early this month. The global petroleum company, in one form or another, has been an Arkansas fixture for a century.

E. Ted Botner, the company’s vice president of law and corporate secretary, will assume Compton’s duties, Murphy said in a news release. Botner will now report to Roger W. Jenkins, president and chief executive. Botner’s new title will be senior vice president, general counsel and corporate secretary.

“Walter joined the Law Department over 32 years ago,” Jenkins said in a statement. “During his distinguished law career, he has led numerous strategic transactions on behalf of the company, including the spinoff of Murphy USA, as well as many complex upstream and downstream acquisitions and divestitures. I wish him all best in his retirement.” 

Botner, a University of Texas graduate with a law degree from the University of Arkansas School of Law, joined Murphy as an attorney in 2001 and once managed its Malaysian operations.

The company also announced that Michael K. McFadyen, executive vice president, offshore, has decided to leave the company effective June 1. Eric M. Hambly, currently executive vice president, onshore, will assume Mr. McFadyen’s responsibilities under a new title, executive vice president, operations.

Jenkins called McFadyen “a key member of our executive team” over his 18 years at the company. “I wish him all the best in retirement.”

Hambly, a 14-year veteran at the company, has bachelor’s and master’s degrees in chemical engineering from Brigham Young University and has completed the General Management Program at Harvard Business School.

The announcement of the corporate headquarters consolidation came May 6 as the company reported first-quarter net losses of $416 million, or $2.71 net loss per diluted share. Adjusted net loss, which excludes discontinued operations and other one-off items, was $46 million, or 30 cents per diluted share.

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