Chesapeake CEO Doug Lawler Talks About 'New Day' At The Company - News9.com - Oklahoma City, OK - News, Weather, Video and Sports |

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Chesapeake CEO Doug Lawler Talks About 'New Day' At The Company

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CEO Doug Lawler says the first thing he did when he arrived at Chesapeake last June was get to know the people. He says he was overwhelmed by their energy. CEO Doug Lawler says the first thing he did when he arrived at Chesapeake last June was get to know the people. He says he was overwhelmed by their energy.
OKLAHOMA CITY -

You may have noticed the new ad campaign for Chesapeake Energy.

It features numerous employees talking about it being "a new day" at the oil and gas company. One employee who's not in those spots, but who's responsible for this 'new day' gave us an exclusive interview.

CEO Doug Lawler talked about the company's new strategy. Lawler made it clear; he thinks Aubrey McClendon created a great company. What he doesn't think is that shareholders were getting the value they should have from what experts agree are among the best assets in the world and from what he argues are the best employees in the business.

2/19/2014 Related Story: New Chesapeake CEO Discusses Challenges, Vision For Future

CEO Doug Lawler says the first thing he did when he arrived at Chesapeake last June was get to know the people. He says he was overwhelmed by their energy.

About ten percent changed employment, let go as part of Lawler's reorganization of the company.

The remaining 11,000 or so are now part of a changed work culture.

"We are going to create value and part of creating that value is through financial discipline," he said.

Lawler says that means cutting back on expenses not directly tied to production, continuing to ratchet up more profitable oil production and being more selective in where they drill.

"We're going to be concentrating our drilling in the areas where we know the higher quality production can come from, the more efficient investments that we can make," he said.

One of the key concerns for investors -- and what hastened Aubrey McClendon's exit -- was the massive debt on Chesapeake's books.

Lawler says there's still much to be done to fix that, one reason he'll be looking to sell off what he calls non-core assets.

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