The Rolex Awards for Enterprise
John Loudon, an international business diplomat and president of the World Wildlife Fund International (Switzerland), has been a member of the World Wildlife Fund Board of Trustees since 1966 and of its executive council since 1968.
Following his early schooling, Loudon obtained a doctorate in law at the University of Utrecht in 1929.
He began working in 1930 for a Royal Dutch/Shell Group Company in The Hague. He was soon assigned to a period of initiation on the drilling rigs of Lake Maracaibo, Venezuela, and then moved to the United States in 1932, working in Boston, Houston and Los Angeles. In 1938, he returned to Venezuela as assistant manager in Caracas, and was appointed general manager in 1944. ln 1947, after nearly a decade in Venezuela, he returned to Europe as a managing director. ln 1952, Loudon became president of the company and was chief executive of the Royal Dutch/Shell Group until 1965 when he became chairman of the board of the Royal Dutch Petroleum Company.
Loudon has served in a wide variety of capacities during his career, including as member of the board of trustees of the Ford Foundation, former chairman of the Chase Manhattan Bank's International Advisory Committee, and a director of the Chase Manhattan Corporation.
His honours include Knight in the Order of the Netherlands Lion (1953), the highest category of this Order given to civilians, and bestowed for exceptional services to the country.
Published in 1981