GREG MICHAELS - CHAIRMAN & CEO
A lifelong entrepreneur, Greg Michaels completed the highly selective and well respected Entrepreneurship Program at the University of Southern California (USC) Marshall School of Business. Mr. Michaels majored in Business Administration and completed an additional pre-medical curriculum. During his four years at USC, he competed as a student-athlete on the acclaimed USC Men’s Varsity Tennis Team. After his time at USC, Mr. Michaels pursued a career as a professional tennis player. Mr. Michaels is a national champion and still competes currently. Today, Mr. Michaels is a successful business leader and is the developer, owner, and operator of a number of businesses encompassing telecommunications, real estate development, energy, and oil and gas. In 2014, Mr. Michaels established a liquefied natural gas (LNG) company for the development of a multi-billion dollar natural gas liquefaction facility located in Southwest Louisiana for the export of LNG globally. As Chairman and CEO, he has spoken on LNG issues internationally and is a published author.
At the age of 26, Mr. Michaels founded Wholesale Airtime, Inc., now Southern California Telephone Company, one of the few privately-held telecommunications companies to successfully navigate the Telecom Act of 1996 that deregulated the telecom industry in the United States. Early in his career, Mr. Michaels wrote his company’s first brief petitioning the California Public Utility Commission (CPUC), who subsequently granted his company’s Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity, creating a privately-held public utility in the State of California. As a pioneer of the telecom industry, he developed the process and platforms that allowed Competitive Local Exchange Carriers to interconnect their networks via incumbent communications providers and contributed to the success of number portability that all Americans enjoy today.
Mr. Michaels has capitalized on his ability to build successful teams by identifying personal strengths in individuals and further developing them. He has employed thousands of people and is well respected by his management teams and personnel. He has bought, sold, and started over two dozen companies. One of his acquisitions gained him a controlling interest in North Energy Central (NEC) www.northenergycentral.com. The principals of NEC have developed over $5 billion in power generation facilities worldwide which include bio fuel, nuclear, and natural gas-fired power plants fueled by LNG.
Upon acquisition of the controlling interest in NEC, Mr. Michaels took over stalled negotiations with the Dominican Republic government to build a 300 megawatt gas-fired power plant. Within months of the purchase of NEC, and leading new negotiations with the state-owned electric utility, Corporación Dominicana de Empresas Eléctricas Estatales (CDEEE), Mr. Michaels and his team increased the scale of the project and signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the CDEEE for the development of a 400 megawatt gas-fired power plant and LNG receiving terminal. The total project costs were estimated at approximately $850 million. Mr. Michaels negotiated additional terms that included provisions which allowed NEC to provide the Dominican government with its foreseeable natural gas requirements.
Mr. Michaels and his wife are 100% owners of Southern California Telephone Company, a United States public utility (www.socaltelephone.com). Mr. Michaels’ latest endeavor is the development of Monkey Island LNG, a company he established to help fill the growing global demand for natural gas. Focused on the energy revolution taking place in North America, Mr. Michaels seeks to become an exporter of U.S. natural gas while simultaneously helping the United States become a net exporter of its energy. In March 2014, Mr. Michaels acquired approximately 246 acres of land via a 99- year Option-to-Lease agreement in Southwest Louisiana for the development of the Monkey Island LNG export terminal. The project is modeled as a 15.75 mtpa natural gas liquefaction facility.
In addition to his business interests, Mr. Michaels’ passion for his community and sense of civic responsibility led him to coach youth soccer and tennis for over fifteen years where he parlayed his strengths in talent development and team building. Mr. Michaels successfully led his soccer teams to earn fifteen division championships and over thirty tournament championships. Mr. Michaels believes, “Success is achieved by helping people accomplish what they never thought possible.” Mr. Michaels runs all areas of his life by this philosophy. He is a dedicated family man, husband of 30 years, and father of three adult children, two graduates of Cornell University and one a graduate of Pepperdine University.