2001 Industry Pioneers

George H. W. BushGeorge H.W. Bush

George Bush brought his unique vision and entrepreneurial spirit to offshore drilling, founding Zapata Offshore Co. in 1955. He astutely ordered an unproven Le Tourneau 3-legged jackup rig, the Scorpion, which was only the sixth jackup rig in the world. In 1957 he introduced the Vinnegaroon, the 7th jackup in a worldwide fleet of eight. Bush ordered 3 NOLA drillship conversions in 1959 when there were only two other full-capability floating rigs. In 1962, the Zapata drillship Sidewinder entered service. Only one other floater had entered service since 1959. One of the early offshore risk takers, Bush played a key role in enabling these developments by creating the organization that made them work.