Pratt Board of Visitor Chair J. Steve Simon Dies

July 13, 2009

Durham, NC -- J. Stephen Simon, chair of the Board of Visitors for the Pratt School of Engineering and a former director and senior vice president of Exxon Mobil Corporation, passed away unexpectedly at his home in Dallas, Texas, on Wednesday, July 8, at age 66. Simon had a distinguished career of more than 40 years with the corporation. During this time he held a series of increasingly senior roles, culminating in his election to the board of directors in 2006. He retired from the company on May 31, 2008. Simon joined Exxon Company, U.S.A. in June 1967 and shortly thereafter began a two-year assignment in the United States Army.

He returned to Exxon U.S.A. in July 1969 as a business analyst in the Baton Rouge Refinery. After holding a variety of supervisory and managerial positions throughout the Baton Rouge and Baytown refineries, and Exxon U.S.A.'s Refining and Controller's departments, Mr. Simon became executive assistant to Exxon U.S.A.'s executive vice president, located in Houston.

He held several positions with the company in New York, London and Italy. He returned to the United States in 1997 and was named an executive vice president of Exxon Company, International, headquartered in Florham Park, New Jersey. In December 1999, he was appointed president of ExxonMobil Refining & Supply Company and vice president of Exxon Mobil Corporation. In December 2004, he became senior vice president of Exxon Mobil Corporation and in January 2006 was elected to the board of the corporation. Beyond his leadership roles at ExxonMobil, Mr. Simon also served on the boards of many voluntary organizations over the course of his career, including the United Way, the Boy Scouts, and the Salvation Army. He was also a member of the Governance Committee of the National Action Council for Minorities in Engineering and had served on the board of the US-China Business Council, the American Petroleum Institute and the National Association of Manufacturers. Following his retirement from ExxonMobil, he became Chair of the Board of Visitors for Duke University's School of Engineering and had also been active in support of the Children's Advocacy Center in Dallas. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 10:00 A.M. today (Monday) at Christ the King Catholic Church presided over by Rev. Msgr. Donald F. Zimmerman. Interment will follow at Hillcrest Memorial Park. In his memory, the Pratt School of Engineering at Duke University has established the J. Stephen Simon Scholarship Endowment Fund. Memorial contributions to the J. Stephen Simon Scholarship Endowment Fund may be made to Duke University in care of Judge Carr, 305 Teer Engineering Building, Box 90271, Duke University, Durham, NC 27708.