Leadership spotlight: Richard Adkerson

Richard Adkerson
Vice chairman, president and CEO
Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc.

Adkerson, named The Best CEO in Metals and Mining by Institutional Investor magazine for the past four years, serves on the boards of the Arizona Commerce Authority and GPEC.

Biggest challenge: “When the financial meltdown occurred in the second half of 2008, it had a dramatic effect on copper prices and other commodities that we produce. We cut back hard cost production, we deferred capital projects, we cut back on our general and administrative expenses and adjusted the cost structure of our business to deal with the lower prices. I’m very proud of our organization on how we did respond.”

Advice to offer: “When you decide to do a deal, the most important thing is to get the deal done, not necessarily to trade for the best deal that is there. You want to get the best terms you can, but too often people let deals get away from them.”


About Michael Gossie

Michael Gossie is an award-winning journalist who has earned more than 50 awards for writing, editing and design. He studied economics at Elmira College in Elmira, N.Y., and put his entrepreneurial spirit to work in 2007, using a 200-year-old family recipe to launch an Italian sauce company. He is a competitive marathon runner, Ironman triathlete and is most proud of being the founding president of the Steuben Arc Foundation in Upstate New York, which serves individuals with developmental disabilities, including his sister.