Mitchell Drilling


Strategically navigating difficult times and taking care of our clients is the
foundation of the success of the George N. Mitchell Drilling company.

Four generations of Mitchells: Thomas, George, Chris, and now Ryan, continue to uphold their “preferred driller” reputation in the Illinois Basin” by staying on the cutting edge of drilling technology and by being responsive, respectful, and resourceful. The late George N. Mitchell's "don't give up" attitude and prudent management talents successfully steered the company through lean times. Retiring debt and storing rigs in the late 20th century prepared the Company to endure the depressed oil market in the 1980’s and 1990’s. This strategy positioned the Company for a brighter market in the 21st century.

When better days came, lessons of experience taught the message that the good times would not last forever. Nothing ever does. Some companies fall prey to speculation and empty promises when oil prices are high. Nevertheless, world events, political and economic influences can affect markets overnight, and only then is success sustained through prudence, patience, and the will to resist the extravagance of “better days”.

Mitchell Drilling endures today because of the experience gained from those who lived and worked in the oil fields before us...and from the wisdom to listen and to learn from their mistakes.

Planning for the hard times is as important
as tempering the rewards of success.

Founder George N. Mitchell

The late George N. Mitchell summarized his management philosophy with a favorite quote from President Theodore Roosevelt: "The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions ... and spends himself into a worthy cause ... who at best, if he wins, knows the thrills of high achievement - and if he fails - at least fails while daring greatly so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat."

Chris Mitchell, President & Geologist. In 1976, George N. Mitchell passed the torch to his son, Chris, but it was a position that was earned with years of sweat and tears, not by blood alone. Chris started in the oil fields as a roughneck in 1966 at the age of 13. This was his only source of income until he graduated from Southern Illinois University in Carbondale with a degree in geology. Chris Mitchell learned the qualities of leadership and calculated risk-taking from his father, George N. Mitchell. Today, Chris manages the company's growth, and his 'in the trenches' experience gives him a unique insight into all aspects of the business.

Ryan Mitchell, Engineer. Fourth generation driller, Ryan, is a graduate of the Engineering School at the University of Tennessee with a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering. His involvement in Well Planning and Completion is bringing new ideas and technologies into the business.

Carl Julian, Vice President of General Field Operations. Organized and decisive, Carl’s life-long dedication and passion for his work are enormous contributing factors to the success of Mitchell Drilling. He has been referred to as “a giant among men in the oil drilling fields” by those who know and respect him.

Ron Wooten, CPA and Vice President of Finance. Ron is financially astute in all aspects of energy-related accounting and tax matters. His fiscal planning acumen and control keep our costs low and our pricing competitive for the value we bring to our clients.