LAGCOE Looey is an honorary position given to someone who has accomplished something great in the oil and gas industry. LAGCOE Looey recipients have shaped the oil and gas industry through years of devoted hard work while continuously giving back to their community. Don Briggs is certainly no exception.
“Don Briggs has worked tirelessly to ensure the health and existence of Louisiana’s oil and gas industry,” said Kenny Crouch, Pressure Control Systems and LAGCOE Chairman of the Board. “He is quite deserving of the honor of wearing the golden hard hat in recognition for all he has done for the industry.”
Born in 1940, Don Briggs enjoyed the warm weather and sunny beaches of Miami where he was raised by his mother and father, Anna Mae and Gifford Briggs. Completing Miami Senior High in 1959, Briggs headed to Tallahassee where he would attend Florida State University on a football scholarship.
After a couple of years at FSU, Briggs traveled to Louisiana for what he thought to be just a summer job. Little did he know that that summer working on a drilling barge would not only make him fall in love with Louisiana but with its oil and gas industry. Briggs would go on to finish his bachelor’s degree at the University of Southwestern Louisiana, which is now known as the University of Louisiana at Lafayette.
Four years later, Briggs started his first company, Aztec Pipe and Supply, which would eventually become the conglomerate known as the Aztec Corporation. Aztec serviced the oil and gas industry from pipeline supplies to drilling fluid. One of Mr. Briggs’ proudest moments in his professional career was reading in The Wall Street Journal that Newpark Resources had acquired the Aztec Corporation.
Briggs served as the Chairman of the Board of the Louisiana Association of Independent Producers and Royalty Owners (LAIPRO) from 1990 until its dissolving. In 1992, Briggs started the Louisiana Independent Oil and Gas Association (LIOGA), serving as president of the association of only 12 members, which has morphed into what we now know as the Louisiana Oil and Gas Association (LOGA).
Today, LOGA’s membership comprises more than 1,300 members representing the independent exploration, production, and servicing sectors of Louisiana’s oil and gas industry. Under Briggs’ leadership, the association has worked with governors, legislators, and members of Congress - from both sides of the aisle - to ensure that the culture of the oil and gas sector remains in Louisiana.
Briggs has been responsible for forming numerous groups within Louisiana’s state government to ensure the environmental quality of this state, along with the health of the oil and gas industry, including the Oilfield Site Restoration (OSR) Commission within the Department of Natural Resources to address a growing issue with orphaned sites across the state. Briggs also played a major role in the development and construction of the Louisiana Immersive Technologies Enterprise (LITE) Center and currently serves on the LITE Commission.
While Briggs’ professional accomplishments are nothing short of amazing, he considers his greatest accomplishments in life to be those done in his local Acadiana community and for fellow Louisianians across the state. Following the devastation of Hurricane Katrina in 2005, as well as the recent devastating floods of 2016, Briggs along with the help of the industry was able to aid in recovery by dispensing funds to affected families and individuals.
In the Lafayette community, Briggs serves as a Eucharistic minister for the St. Pius X Catholic Church where he volunteers in nursing homes to deliver sermons and give those parishioners the Sacrament of Communion. Briggs is a founding member of the Acadiana Outreach Center that houses and ministers to mothers and children who have been victims of domestic abuse.
Briggs still holds the title as President of LOGA, where he remains committed to fight for Louisiana’s oil and gas industry and serve in his community. LAGCOE will host a luncheon to honor Don Briggs as the 36th LAGCOE Looey in August as part of the kick-off of LAGCOE 2017 to be held October 24-26, 2017, at the Cajundome & Convention Center in Lafayette, Louisiana. Learn more at LAGCOE.com.