James E. Barnes

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James E. Barnes

James E. Barnes

“The hallmark of Mapco…our marching orders, if you will…is our premiership concept. We want to be the best, the most productive, the most efficient, the most profitable at what we do.”
James Barnes, 1989


Oklahoma native James E. Barnes graduated from Oklahoma A&M (now Oklahoma State University) and the University of Texas before accepting a position at Conoco. In 1970 he graduated from Harvard’s Advanced Management Program and later transferred to MAPCO, a Fortune 200 company, where he became vice president and CEO in 1983. He was named president of the company in 1984 and was named Chairman of the Board, President, and CEO in 1986. His guidance through the turbulent 1980s was instrumental in positioning MAPCO Coal, Gas Products, Petroleum, and Transportation as a major diversified energy company for the 1990s. Barnes also was appointed as chairman of the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education in 1989.

Fun fact

James Barnes was listed among “Corporate America’s Most Powerful People” in Forbes Magazine in 1992.

Oklahoma connections

Barnes was born in Ponca City, Oklahoma.








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