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Jim Derryberry Named Cockrell School Distinguished Engineering Graduate

Jim Derryberry

Jim Derryberry, alumnus of the Chandra Family Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, was named a Distinguished Engineering Graduate of the Cockrell School of Engineering at The University of Texas at Austin. Jim received a BS in Electrical Engineering in 1967 and an MS in Electrical Engineering in 1968.

Jim joins other inductees Dr. Hongming Chen (BS, Chemical Engineering, 1992), Richard Church (BS, Mechanical Engineering, 1977), Maj. Gen. Jeannie M. Leavitt (BS, Aerospace Engineering, 1990), and W. Jeffrey Sparks ( BS, Petroleum Engineering 1983

Jim is a Special Advisor at Riverstone Holdings LLC, a private equity firm based in New York City with offices in Houston, Palo Alto, London and Mexico City.  He and two colleagues formed the partnership in 2000 to focus on investments in energy-related projects for institutional and private clients. The firm has invested over $40 billion dollars in 180 companies in 11 countries.  He has served on the Boards of Directors of Magellan Midstream Partners and USA Compression.  He is currently a member of the Board of Directors of Enviva, a supplier of wood chip fuel for power generation in Europe and Asia.

Jim began his career in 1968 at Bell Telephone Laboratories, where he was involved in systems research and development for the Department of Defense, working on advanced  systems for ballistic missile defense, as well as other special defense studies requested by DoD.  He continued this focus at Teledyne in Huntsville, Alabama where his group was technical consultant to the 1972 Strategic Arms Limitation Treaty (SALT) negotiations.

Jim received an MBA from Stanford University in 1976, graduating in the top 5% of his class, and began a career in finance in New York with JP Morgan, eventually becoming manager of the Utility Department.  Here he specialized in energy project finance, including Mobil’s Indonesian Arun LNG project and Atlantic Richfield’s Prudhoe Bay Alaskan oil field.

Jim moved to the Goldman Sacs Energy Group in 1986. There he helped clients raise debt and equity financing and advised on merger and acquisitions, helping several European governments as they privatized their holdings in energy companies, including British Petroleum in the UK and Neste in Finland.  In 1991, after the collapse of the Soviet Union, Goldman was selected to advise the Russian Federation on foreign investment and Jim worked with the Yeltsin government to develop outside investment in Russian energy. Additionally, he was advisor to British Petroleum in its purchase of Standard Oil of Ohio and Britoil. He also led Atlantic Richfield’s spin offs and public offerings of Arco Chemical and Lyondell Petrochemical.

In 1994, Jim returned to JP Morgan to become Department Head of the Mergers and Acquisitions Energy Group.  He led the privatization of the United States Enrichment Corporation by the US Government and advised Saudi Aramco in its merger with  Shell Oil’s US refining and marketing assets to form Motiva.

 At Texas Jim was elected to the Student Senate in 1965 and 1966 representing the College of Engineering and was selected as a Goodfellow in 1966 and an Outstanding Student in 1967 by the Cactus yearbook. He was a member of the honor societies Tau Beta Pi, Eta Kappa Nu and Sigma Xi.  He has served on the Board of Overseers for the Hoover Institution at Stanford University and is currently a member of the Cockrell School’s Engineering Advisory Board.

He is married to Patricia (McMahon), BA College of Liberal Arts 1967, The University of Texas at Austin.