50. New Mexico : Mack C. Chase
Oil and natural gas tycoon Mack C. Chase made a fortune in the Permian Basin oilfields in Texas and New Mexico. He started out working on wells with his brother before eventually creating his own business, Mack Chase, Inc., in 1968. Chase partnered with John R. Gray eleven years later to start Marbob Energy–named after their wives–and offered pumping services to oil-well owners in southeast New Mexico.
The duo bought their own wells, usually low-performing ones that they fixed up. By 1991, Marbob was producing about 3,000 barrels a day. The two split shortly thereafter. Chase invested his assets in a new firm called Mack Energy; Gray kept the Marbob name. Mack Energy then sold a large portion of its property to Concho Resources in 2007, and Concho also acquired Gray’s Marbob assets in 2010. A committed philanthropist, Chase is active in the Artesia community. His Chase Foundation provides scholarships to local students and he hosts wounded soldiers at his Wyoming ranch.