The Berkshire Player RosterBy Mel Duvall | Posted 2003-08-01 Print
Shareholders nearly deify Warren Buffett for the way he manages his diverse holding company, Berkshire Hathaway of Omaha.
The Berkshire Player Roster
Chairman and CEO, Berkshire Hathaway
Arguably the world's greatest investor, Buffett comes off as a pretty ordinary guy. He lives in the same house he bought more than 40 years ago, wears plain and sometimes rumpled suits, and drinks Cherry Coke. In reality, the Omaha native has amassed a personal fortune estimated at $30.5 billion by Forbes. He is decidedly low-tech: He doesn't have a computer in his office and is reputed to not even use a calculator.
Vice Chairman, Berkshire Hathaway
Like Buffett, Munger is a product of Omaha, and worked at Buffett's grandfather's store, Buffett & Son, in the 1950s. The two didn't become business partners until the mid-1970s, after Munger became a successful attorney. The straight man to Buffett's jokes, Munger is seen as the quiet but brilliant partner. Munger also is chairman of Wesco Financial, a Berkshire company, and a director of Costco Wholesale.
Vice President, Treasurer, Berkshire Hathaway
Hamburg pulls the financials together from Berkshire's 60-odd subsidiaries. That task is probably why he is Berkshire's highest-paid employee, earning $462,500 in salary in 2002.
Walter Scott, Jr.
Chairman, Level 3 Communications
He was instrumental in convincing Buffett to give up his long-held aversion to technology companies and make a sizable investment in Level 3 Communications in 2002.
Director of Internal Auditing, Berkshire Hathaway
Amick has been responsible for Berkshire's internal auditing since 1996, and as such, has the monolithic task of making sure the company's dozens of subsidiaries meet new accounting rules.
The two hit it off in 1991 and have since become good friends, bridge partners and even occasionally vacation together. When Gates proposed to his wife Melinda, he had his private jet detour to Omaha so he could pick out an engagement ring at Borsheim's, a Berkshire subsidiary.
One of the Berkshire's longest-serving directors, Chace was an original member of the family that owned and operated the Berkshire Hathaway textile mills, purchased by Buffett in 1962.
Former Chairman, Capital Cities/ABC
Murphy was added to Berkshire's board of directors in May primarily to satisfy rules of the New York Stock Exchange, which require companies to have a majority of independent directors. The two have been longtime friends.
Like Murphy, Keough was added to the Berkshire board in May. He is a former president of Coca-Cola.
Buffett credits Graham, his instructor at Columbia University's business school, with planting the value-investing seeds that grew into the Berkshire empire. Graham's best-known doctrine was to look for "cigar butts"—companies that the stock market had discarded, but still had a few good "puffs" of value left in them. Graham died in 1976.
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