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Summer 2007 Vol. V, No. 4

Inside the Gate

Campaign update

An Energizing Enterprise

Establishing the Munib R. and Angela Masri Institute of Energy and Natural Resources

AUB Trustee Munib R. Masri and his wife, Angela, announced in March 2007 their intention to establish the Munib R. and Angela Masri Institute of Energy and Natural Resources at AUB.

Masri, who has a degree in petroleum geology from the University of Texas and a master’s degree in geology and government from Sul Ross State University in Texas, says that there is a desperate need in the region for qualified people to work in international petroleum and related industries. “A concern common to nearly all companies in these fields (oil and gas production, services industries) is finding new engineers and geologists to replace an aging work force that is mostly expected to retire during the next decade,” he explains.

Masri, who has already established an engineering and geology college at An-Najah National University in Nablus, Palestine, says he is confident that AUB will graduate men and women who will be “employable and qualified petroleum engineers and hydrologists” while at the same time “encouraging the ideals of ethical behavior, professionalism, and environmentally responsible use of natural resources… AUB’s credibility and location would position the institution as a major contributor of expertise in the field of oil and gas as well as water and hydrogeology.” Masri hopes that this energy and natural resources initiative will develop into a cross-border universities program involving Palestine, Jordan, and Lebanon, and contribute significantly to these countries’ development and to the region as a whole. Masri’s wife, Angela, also studied geology in Texas.

Masri’s long and distinguished career began in 1956 when he went to work as a geologist for E.W. Pauley and Phillips Petroleum Company in Jordan. In 1963, he became president of Phillips Petroleum Company in Algeria and in 1970, after civil strife in Jordan, Masri joined the Jordanian government as minister of public works. Twenty-three years later he became a minister of state in the first Palestinian government, responsible for finance and reconstruction.

Since 1971, Masri has been chairman and CEO of the Edgo Group, which has been active in the petroleum and hydrogeology industries in the Gulf, Levant, and North Africa for 50 years. Edgo is also a founding investor in Sindicatum Carbon Capital, a specialist finance business that develops projects that use the latest technologies to abate and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. In addition to his extraordinary record of accomplishment in business, Masri is also widely admired for his philanthropy and peacemaking efforts in Palestine.

Chairman of the AUB Board of Trustees Dr. Tom Morris noted that Trustee Masri has been a strong supporter of AUB for many years and cited in particular his earlier gift to the University’s Center for Advanced Mathematical Sciences (CAMS). “We are

enormously gratified by this new and important gift, which will allow us to build capacity in an area that is critically important to the region and, in fact, in the world.”

Provost Peter Heath stated that the gift will “enhance institutional synergy and allow us to pull together and build on resources that already exist in the University.” He explained that AUB faculty and staff would work closely with a team of experts from Edgo Group to develop plans for the institute.