Dave Samson could not be getting much rest. Exorbitant gas prices remain a hot-button issue. A decision earlier this year by an Ecuadorian court that Chevron pay Amazon residents $8.6 billion for environmental damages – a ruling his company staunchly opposes after a 17-year legal battle – has tested him. And though the BP oil-spill story is more than a year old, no energy corporation, let alone one consistently in the top five of the Fortune 500, can allow those lessons learned to be forgotten.
Beyond specific crises, however, Samson's broad oversight and industry leadership is practically unrivaled in the in-house PR world. Corporate branding is his team's responsibility, as is the management of the company's global website, Chevron.com. He is also a former chair for the general committee on communications for the American Petroleum Institute, and is a member of the Institute for Public Relations' board of trustees, The Seminar, and the Arthur W. Page Society.