McMicken College of Arts & SciencesUniversity of Cincinnati

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ExxonMobil Executive Alumnus Visits Campus

When John Daniel Hoholick returned to campus after a 25-year absence, he was “immediately taken back by the changes in the landscape.

Date: 12/6/2005
By: Billie Dziech
Phone: 556-1707
When John Daniel Hoholick returned to campus after a 25-year absence, he was “immediately taken back by the changes in the landscape.” But Hoholick has changed a lot himself since earning a master’s in geology in 1980.

The former student, who resides in Kuwait, is currently President of ExxonMobil Exploration and Product Kuwait Limited, a subsidiary of Exxon Mobil Corporation. He was on campus to address the Geology Department. As one of its major success stories, his career demonstrates the possibilities that a degree in geology provides.

Hoholick began his career with Exxon Company USA in Midland, Texas, where he worked as a production geologist responsible for field development and reservoir mapping. His next job was with the Exploration Division as senior petroleum geologist in charge of exploration wildcatting in several areas. Then he moved to Houston, where he analyzed exploration economic data and was responsible for profitability analysis and strategic planning.

From there Hoholick traveled as a supervisory geologist to New Orleans to oversee field development and production of offshore and onshore oil fields. His next move, in 1994, took him out of the country to Sakhalin Island in far eastern Russia, where he managed the newly opened office of Exxon Ventures (CIS), Inc. In 1995, he moved to Baku, Azerbaijan to open and serve as managing director of the company representative office. Relocating to Luanda, Angola, in 2000, after the merger of Exxon and Mobil, he became geoscience director responsible for exploration and development geoscience. Then in 2004, he was appointed to his current position.

Hoholick said he came away from the campus with “a very positive feeling.” He was impressed by the Geology Department’s “wonderful and excellent facility and the new bookstore that is almost the size of a shopping mall.” He added, “The university has accepted change and is prospering from it. The new administration has already left its mark with many more advancements planned. I almost wanted to get back to student life, but with a few more finances this time.”

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