Rex W. Tillerson, (born March 23, 1952, Wichita Falls, Texas, U.S.), American business executive who served as secretary of state (2017--18) in the administration of U.S. Pres. Donald Trump. He was chairman and CEO (2006--16) of Exxon Mobil Corporation.
Tillerson grew up in Oklahoma and Texas--among the Nation's leading manufacturers of petroleum and natural gas--and graduated with a degree in engineering from the University of Texas in Austin in 1975. He immediately joined the Exxon Corporation as a production engineer, and from the mid-1980s that he was a business development manager in the firm's natural gas section. He later served as the general director (1989--92) for Exxon's oil and gas production in a area that spanned Arkansas, Kansas, Oklahoma, and Texas. Following Exxon merged with Mobil Corp. in 1999 to form Exxon Mobil, he held a number of senior executive positions. Chairman and CEO Lee Raymond personally picked Tillerson because his successor, also Tillerson supposed command of the combined firm in 2006.
During his years of leadership, Exxon Mobil rated towards the top among the planet's most profitable companies.Tillerson's successes stems from a wide working knowledge of Exxon Mobil's many petroleum and natural gas operations. His experience handling technologically and geologically challenging upstream operations (exploration and drilling) prepared him to the difficult conditions which became the standard for the petroleum sector in the 21st century, especially as the world's supply of easy-to-reach crude oil diminished. Geopolitics introduced a different challenge, particularly in Venezuela's nationalization of petroleum fields (2007), which stripped Exxon Mobil of its petroleum concessions in 2 Venezuelan projects. Despite these challenges,
Tillerson claimed that fossil fuels represented the only resource capable of meeting growing global energy demands and remained committed to petroleum production. In 2008 Exxon Mobil showed its strategy to exit the low-profit-margin retail gas company, and within only a couple of months Tillerson declared that the company had broken its own income record. In 2011 he helped broker a deal that allowed Exxon Mobil to search for oil in the area of the Arctic Ocean that has been controlled by Russia. On the other hand, the agreement was placed on hold in 2014 when the United States put sanctions on Russia after the latter's annexation of Crimea.
Although Tillerson had no expertise in the public sector, in December 2016 that he was chosen by President-elect Donald Trump to serve as secretary of state. In January 2017 his Senate confirmation hearings started, and they proved highly controversial, with some senators questioning his connections to Russia. But, Tillerson finally has been verified, 56--43, also he took office in February. Acting on a guarantee to implement big cutbacks, Tillerson began reorganizing the Department of State. Quite a few dismissals, resignations, and early retirements ensued, along with a hiring freeze has been enacted. The staff reductions proved contentious, some diplomats asserting that the section was left ineffective. On policy issues, Tillerson often found himself at odds with Trump.
Notably, while Tillerson sought a diplomatic solution with North Korea about that country's development of nuclear weapons, '' Trump stated he was "wasting his time" Amid a growing rift between the two men--Tillerson reportedly called Trump a "moron"--his future as secretary of state attracted widespread speculation. Back in March 2018 Tillerson was forced from office by Trump.