Houston oilman George P. Mitchell dead at 94

George P. Mitchell, oil businessman and philanthropist, died July 26 at the age of 94, according to a statement from the Mitchell family.

Mitchell, born in Galveston, Tex., was a petroleum engineer with geology training from Texas A&M University and founder of Mitchell Energy & Development Corp. He long believed that natural gas could be extracted from shale—well before anyone else ever thought it possible.

Mitchell, known as the pioneer of hydraulic fracturing and drilling technologies that created the shale gas revolution, was honored with Gas Technology Institute’s Lifetime Achievement Award in 2010.

Mitchell is well-known in Houston and beyond for his various philanthropic endeavors. The master-planned community in The Woodlands, Tex., north of Houston, was developed by Mitchell, as was the popular event venue, Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavillion, named after his wife, who passed away in 2009.

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