Alumni Association presents Smette for next Speaker Series

MINOT, N.D. – The Minot State University Alumni Association is proud to present Darryl Smette as the next Alumni Speaker Series guest on the Minot State campus March 29-30.

Smette is scheduled to visit with six different classes over the two days.

“It is fantastic to have Darryl back on campus for the Alumni Speaker Series,” said Janna McKechnie, director of alumni and engagement. “His unique story will resonate with so many different programs and students. I can’t thank him enough for taking time to meet with our students and faculty.”

In 2018, the MSU Alumni Association established the series to bring prominent alumni from across the world back to campus to share their expertise. The COVID-19 pandemic paused the program for a year and a half and Smette will be the first guest in the 2022-23 academic year.

Smette is a 1969 graduate of Minot State with an art major and a minor in history. He spent the bulk of his working career in oil and gas after earning his master’s degree in administration and supervision from Wichita State in 1975. He has nine hours towards a Master of Finance as well.

The Newburg native worked for just shy of 30 years for Devon Energy Corporation in Oklahoma City, starting as the manager of marketing and administrative planning and retiring as the company’s executive vice president of marketing, midstream, supply chain and planning, and evaluation.

Devon Energy Corporation was a small, private company when Smette started and went public in late 1988, moving from a member of the American Stock Exchange to the New York Stock Exchange in 1999. It was included in the S&P 500 in 2000 and remains there to this day. Devon reached a peak of approximately 6,000 employees in 2014. It was one of two companies to pioneer “S” shaped drilling to retrieve natural gas from coal seams, was the first company to develop horizontal oil and natural gas drilling, the first to combine horizontal drilling with fracturing — changing the dynamics of the U.S. oil and gas industry — and one of three companies, and the only U.S. company, to pioneer a way to extract heavy oil from underground reservoirs.

Devon was named one of the 100 Best Companies to Work For by Fortune Magazine nine straight years.

Along with his work with Devon, Smette was on the board of directors for Panhandle Oil & Gas Inc. from 2008-2017 and EnLink Midstream from 2014-2018. He was the energy advisor for three years for the Kansas City Federal Reserve Board.

He was approved by the University of Texas as an instructor in their continuing education program, focusing on energy and management. He has been a speaker for various university graduate and undergraduate classes, but primarily at the University of Oklahoma, Prince School of Business, and Oklahoma State University, Meinders School of Business.

Smette never forgot his art roots as well, serving on the Oklahoma City Museum of Art’s Board of Trustees from 2005-2016 and is a Patrons Prix de West Circle for the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City since 2008.

He and his wife, Kathy, continue to collect art.

“Kathy and I have been active fine art collectors for over 50 years,” he said. “Our collection includes various styles, mediums, and subject matter. The collection currently exceeds 400 original pieces.”

About Minot State University
Minot State University is a public university dedicated to excellence in education, scholarship, and community engagement achieved through rigorous academic experiences, active learning environments, commitment to public service, and a vibrant campus life.

Published: 03/27/23   

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