Michael A. Mehling
With great sadness, MIT CEEPR faculty and staff learned of the passing of a long-time friend and supporter, Tom Therkildsen of Statoil ASA. “Tom was one of our most thoughtful and engaged partners in the energy industry– he will be sorely missed”, said CEEPR Director Christopher Knittel at a recent staff meeting. During his time at Statoil, Tom served in a number of senior roles, including that of Manager of the CEO’s Office, and most recently was a Senior Adviser at Statoil’s Corporate Sustainability Unit. He previously held high-ranking political appointments in the Norwegian Government, serving as State Secretary in the Office of the Norwegian Prime Minister and in the Norwegian Ministry of Finance, and as Political Adviser to the Norwegian Ministry of Energy and Industry. Tom started his career at the University of Bergen, however, where he was an Assistant Professor, Fellow, and later Chief Information Officer. For his colleagues at CEEPR, the affinity for academia remained apparent in how Tom approached his engagement with MIT. As Loren Cox, a former CEEPR Director, remembers: “what Tom admired about MIT programs and workshops was an atmosphere where ideas were openly debated – and debate encouraged.” His keen intellect, warm generosity and humor enriched any debate he participated in, and his unfaltering optimism left few untouched. Everyone at CEEPR will remember Tom with great fondness, and extends their deepest sympathies to his family.