The Best of ATO: Michael Greenwood

Michael L. Greenwood, a native of Tulsa, Okla., graduated from Oklahoma State University in 1977 with a bachelor’s degree in business administration.


While at OSU, Mr. Greenwood served as a Kerr Residence Hall Officer and was on the President’s and Dean’s Honor Rolls. He continued his education and graduated summa cum laude from The University of Tulsa in 1980 with his MBA.


Mr. Greenwood began his career with The Williams Companies in Corporate Planning in 1980. In 1982, he became the Director of Planning for the Penn Central Energy Group. Mr. Greenwood then served as the General Manager of Mergers & Acquisitions for MAPCO, Inc., from 1986-1994. In 1994, he became the Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer for Alliance Resource Partners, L.P. and became the Vice President - Finance and Treasurer of Energy Transfer Partners, L.P. in 2002. Mr. Greenwood then founded Carnegie Capital LLC, a financial advisory firm, in 2004 and is currently its Managing Director.


Additionally, Mr. Greenwood has served on the board of directors for publicly listed companies on the New York, NASDAQ and London stock exchanges. He has also served on boards for various private equity sponsored companies.


Mr. Greenwood serves on numerous boards and committees for the OSU Foundation including the Board of Trustees, Board of Governors, Budget Committee, Building Committee and Compensation Committee. He is a sponsor of the OSU Student Foundation and is a member of the OSU Loyal and True Society. Mr. Greenwood is also a member of the Spears School of Business Associates, SSB Speakers Bureau, OSU Research Foundation Board and Cowboy Technologies Board.


Mr. Greenwood has been recognized by the Spears School Tributes: 100 For 100 as one of its top 100 graduates of the past 100 years and has been inducted into both the Spears School of Business Hall of Fame and the OSU Hall of Fame.


Mr. Greenwood and his wife, Anne, have supported their alma mater in many ways. The Greenwoods have endowed the Michael L. Greenwood - Tulsa Will Rogers Ropers Endowed Scholarship, the Anne Morris Greenwood - Carnegie Wildcats Endowed Scholarship and the Anne Greenwood OSU Marching Band Endowed Scholarship. They are one of the lead donors for the new OSU Performing Arts Center and major donors for the new Spears School of Business building and the new Wesley Foundation center.


The Greenwoods are also sponsor donors for the HRAD Distinguished Chef Series, The H. Louise & H.E. “Ed” Cobb Speaker Series and the OSU Alumni Association Homecoming Endowment. Their support of academics and athletics at OSU have led to the naming of the Michael and Anne Greenwood Distance Learning Center in the Spears School of Business, the Anne Morris Greenwood Reading Room in the Edmon Low Library and the Michael and Anne Greenwood Tennis Center.


1. Please explain your experience in college at OSU, the development of your corporate career and the establishment of your business, Carnegie Capital.


As a first generation college student in my family, my decision to attend OSU came with the responsibility to self-finance my education. Thus, my college lifestyle was simply go to class and then go to work. So my experience at OSU was very limited as I needed to work as much as possible to fund my college expenses. However, through hard work and diligence I graduated in four years with no student debt.


My first job after OSU was with a private firm in a business development role. I soon realized that was the area in which I wanted to focus my career. I also realized that I needed more financial education to pursue my goal so I returned to graduate school and earned an MBA. I then joined the William Companies and began a long career in the area of Mergers & Acquisitions and Corporate Finance.


After working in various Fortune 500 energy conglomerates for nearly 25 years and serving as the Chief Financial Officer for several publicly traded companies, I left Corporate America in 2004 and founded Carnegie Capital to provide financial advisory services for clients in need of assistance with acquisitions, divestitures, debt and equity offerings, and financial structuring. Carnegie Capital has also formed an affiliation with a New York-based firm focused on energy assets which extends our reach into private equity investments.


My career has also provided me the opportunity to serve on the Board of Directors of several publicly traded energy companies listed on the NYSE, NASDAQ and London stock exchanges.


2. After having lived in Tulsa and outside the state for many years, how did you and Anne decide to settle down in Stillwater?


When Anne retired from her corporate career at American Electric Power, since my business requires constant travel regardless of my location, I gave her the option to select her preferred retirement community including living abroad. After just a short thought process, she told me that she wanted to return to our old college town – Stillwater, OK!!! Although I initially was reluctant, I can honestly say that Anne’s selection was a great decision. Being part of the smaller Stillwater community allows us to make a real impact locally and provides us the ability to serve our alma mater in so many ways that would not be possible if we lived anywhere else. We are only one example of the many OSU alumni that have returned and made Stilly their long-term home.


3. How did you and Anne become acquainted with the members of the Epsilon Omicron ATO chapter and how do you interact and bond with your new brothers?


We had been friends with the former House Mom for several years and she would invite Anne over for dinners and to spend time with her and the members when I was away on business. Anne would tell me frequently how great a group of young men represented ATO so I started to also join them for dinner and conversations when I was in town. I quickly found out just how correct Anne was in her assessment of the quality of the membership. We were both so impressed by the Men of Alpha Tau Omega that we started spending more and more time with them and began supporting the membership in any way we could including sponsoring Gatorfest and providing meals during Homecoming and Finals Week.


As my interaction with the ATO members increased, they bestowed on me the great honor of being initiated during the fall semester of 2015. I recognize that my initiation was through the honorary process and that I did not earn my membership in the same way as my ATO brothers. However, I have publicly vowed to the current members that I will indeed earn this great honor that they have given me.


So, I have offered my service to Epsilon Omicron in any way they desire and encourage them to call on me whenever needed. And they have. I have attended chapter meetings, social functions, community service events and provided career guidance to various members. I will always stand ready to serve the ATO brotherhood to earn the honor they have given me.


4. What is the biggest advantage you see in being a member of an organization such as Alpha Tau Omega and how can it make a difference in a young man's life?


The quality of one’s life is greatly influenced by the supportive relationships they form around them. Attending a major university like OSU can sometimes be overwhelming for young men who have no experience in such a large campus environment. Having the support of your ATO brothers who have been through the experience increases each member’s chances for success.


I have been around many different fraternities but I was drawn to Alpha Tau Omega by their focus on leadership development and community service. I believe that ATO embodies the original concept behind the creation of a fraternity. Being part of an organization that emphasizes development and principle-based programs with a foundation built upon love and respect for one another will benefit each member throughout their lives. We truly become brothers with one goal – to support each other in becoming the best we can be. The value we each receive by being part of Alpha Tau Omega will last a lifetime.


5. Why do you and Anne feel it is important to spend so much time and resources giving back to the community and to others?


Anne and I were only able to attend OSU with the help of scholarships. Many decades ago someone, who did not know us and owed us nothing, provided scholarship funds simply out of generosity. It was this support from others that allowed us to pursue careers and achieve a lifestyle that we could not have imagined from our humble beginnings. So how could we not do the same for those that come behind us?


We recognize that we would not be where we are today without the support we received from others those many years ago. Therefore, we show our appreciation for the gift we received by willingly giving our time and resources to helping others across the OSU campus and the Stillwater community. We feel if we can do one thing that improves someone’s life, then it is worth the time and effort. Although Anne and I never had any intention of being philanthropists, it is now become our primary focus and we have found nothing to be more gratifying.