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Woodside Appoints Former Shell Senior Executive Ann Pickard as Director

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Monday, February 29, 2016

Woodside Petroleum Ltd. announced Monday that its Board has appointed Ann Pickard as a non-executive director effective Feb. 29. Pickard joins Woodside as an independent director.

Woodside Chairman Michael Chaney said that Pickard had significant international business experience.

“The directors are delighted that we have been able to attract a person of Ms Pickard’s background and experience to the company’s Board,” Chaney said.

On Feb. 1 Pickard retired from Royal Dutch Shell plc, where she held numerous positions during her 15-year tenure with the company. Before her retirement from Shell, Pickard served as executive vice president, Arctic and was responsible for Shell’s Arctic exploration efforts. This followed three years as Executive Vice President of Shell’s Exploration and Production business and Country Chair of Shell in Australia, and five years as Executive Vice President, Africa. Pickard joined Shell in 2000 after an 11-year tenure with Mobil prior to its merger with Exxon.

Pickard is a director of KBR Inc. She is also a member of Chief Executive Women, the Global Agenda Council on the Arctic for the World Economic Forum, the Advisory Council of the Eurasia Foundation, and Catalyst. Pickard was a director of Westpac Banking Corporation between 2011 and 2014.

Pickard holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of California, San Diego and a Master of Arts degree from the University of Pennsylvania. 



Woodside Petroleum names Ann Pickard as independent director

Angela Macdonald-SmithEnergy Reporter: The Sydney Morning Herald

Former Shell Australia chairwoman Ann Pickard, once famously branded “the bravest woman in oil”, has revived her ties with the local petroleum industry, taking up a non-executive director role at Woodside Petroleum.

Woodside chairman Michael Chaney pointed to the international business experience of Ms Pickard, who took responsibility for Shell’s exploration efforts in the Arctic after she left Australia in 2013.

She previously headed up Shell’s operations in Nigeria, where she earned a reputation for delivering in difficult environments.

During her years at Shell Australia, Ms Pickard was instrumental in progressing the oil major’s floating liquefied natural gas projects.

On her departure in May 2013, she named the progress made towards a floating LNG project at the Browse venture, in which Shell is operator Woodside’s biggest partner, as one of her key achievements.

However, she is joining the Woodside board at a time when the future of the Browse project has been thrown into uncertainty amid low oil prices and a reluctance among LNG buyers to lock themselves into new long-term purchase commitments.

Ms Pickard retired from Shell on February 1. She takes up the Woodside director role effective from Monday.

She is also a director of petroleum industry services giant KBR. Ms Pickard, who was a director of Westpac Banking Corporation from 2011 until 2014, holds several other roles, including a seat on the Advisory Council of the Eurasia Foundation.

“The directors are delighted that we have been able to attract a person of Ms Pickard’s background and experience to the company’s board,” Mr Chaney said.

Shell holds a 13.6 per cent stake in Woodside but has made it clear the holding is not a core investment, reinforcing market expectations it may be within the $US30 billion of assets the oil major is targeting for divestment over the next three years after its BG Group takeover.

Ms Pickard joins Woodside at a time when Shell’s influence within the board is set to decline. One of the two Shell-nominated directors, Andrew Jamieson, will retire at the 2016 annual shareholder meeting. 

Ms Pickard was given the title of “the bravest woman in oil” by Fortune magazine during her time in Nigeria.

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