2023 Ernest C. Arbuckle Award dinner honoring Kenneth A. Hersh, MBA ’89

2023 Ernest C. Arbuckle Award dinner honoring Kenneth A. Hersh, MBA ’89

The Arbuckle Dinner and Award

  • The Arbuckle dinner is a Stanford GSB tradition that celebrates the legacy of Ernie Arbuckle, the school's third dean.
  • The Arbuckle award recognizes alumni and friends of the school who demonstrate a commitment to managerial excellence and addressing society's changing needs.
  • This year's recipient is Ken Hirsch, a Stanford GSB alumnus and co-founder of Natural Gas Partners.

Ken Hirsch's Career

  • Ken Hirsch is a Stanford GSB alumnus and successful private equity investor.
  • He co-founded Natural Gas Partners (NGP) while pursuing his MBA at Stanford GSB and achieved a remarkable 30% compounded rate of return over 27 years.
  • NGP became known for its leadership principles, creative financial structures, and a culture of transparency and teamwork.
  • Hirsch successfully transitioned NGP to new leaders and became the President and CEO of the George W. Bush Presidential Center.
  • At the Bush Center, he raised a $302.5 million endowment and created a sustainable future for the institution.

Ken Hirsch's Leadership Philosophy

  • Hirsch believes in always moving forward, without neutral or reverse gears.
  • He emphasizes the importance of collaboration and the role of Stanford in connecting him with influential mentors.
  • Hirsch highlights the positive impact of the unconventional Shale Revolution, which NGP played a part in financing, on the economy, foreign policy, and carbon emissions.

Ken Hirsch's Advice and Reflections

  • Hirsch advises others to form quality relationships, embrace change, and think big.
  • He regrets not paying it forward enough and emphasizes the importance of community.
  • Hirsch describes his pivot to the nonprofit sector as humbling and gratifying.
  • He emphasizes the importance of civility and choosing community over chaos.

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