Dorington G. Little was born in Los Angeles in 1927. He graduated from the Colorado School of Mines with a degree in Geological Engineering in 1950. While attending Mines he spent one year (1949) in Ethiopia working for Sinclair Petroleum as a field geologist.
Dory began his career working as an exploitation engineer. His first job was in West Texas supervising the drilling and completion of wells for various independent companies. In 1954 Aminoil offered him the opportunity to go to the Kuwait/Saudi Arab Neutral Zone where he worked for two years as an exploitation engineer and geologist.
In 1956 Dory moved to Iran as an exploitation and survey geologist for the Consortium, at which time he was assigned to duties in various major oil fields including Ahwaz, Agha Jari, Gach Saran, and Bibi Hakimeh. He also did field geology in the Banda Abbas area. In 1957 he became a Mobil employee and continued working in Iran until 1963, progressing from senior exploitation geologist to department head of exploitation. Most of the Iranian geologists were in his department.
In 1964 he was assigned to Mobil’s headquarters in New York as the Middle East Exploration Advisor in the Middle East Joint Interest Section. For the next two years he was Technical Representative for Mobil on various committees in the Iran Consortium, the Iraq Petroleum Company, which operated in 15 different countries, and Aramco. In this capacity, he evaluated operating partners’ proposals and sought Middle East oil and gas opportunities for Mobil.
In 1966 Mobil loaned him to the Iraq Petroleum Company and posted him to the Abu Dhabi Petroleum Company as Exploration Manager. This was a one year assignment while Mobil trained an Iraq Petroleum Company career employee. Following Abu Dhabi, he was sent to Australia to head Mobil Exploration Australia and was based in Melbourne as General Manager.
After a year in Australia, in 1968 he was posted to Mobil Oil Libya as Vice President and Exploration Manager. At that time Mobil Oil Libya had 60 geologists and geophysicists. (He was also responsible for Mobil Aviation in Libya.) During his tenure as Exploration Manager the Exploration Department made five oil discoveries, which totaled 300MMB of recoverable reserves, and increased production to 300MBOD.
In May 1971 Dory was sent to Mobil Oil Indonesia as President and General Manager. At that time the company was a start-up affiliate; however, in October 1971 the 13 TCF
Arun gas and condensate field was discovered. Mobil, in conjunction with Pertamina, developed the Arun LNG Project. Initially the project had three trains; later it grew to six trains. The Arun Project made hundreds of millions of dollars for Mobil, and was regarded as one of Mobil’s crown jewels.
During his seven years in Indonesia Dory was heavily involved in the technical and commercial decisions which led to the success of the Indonesian LNG industry. In 2002, to mark the twenty-fifth anniversary of the start of the Indonesian LNG industry, he was one of nine people honored by Pertamina as pioneers and founders of the Indonesian LNG industry.
In 1978 he was transferred to Mobil Oil Canada as President where he remained for 3.5 years. While in that post Mobil Oil Canada increased both oil and gas reserves and production, becoming one of the top-ten Canadian companies in net income. In addition, the Hibernia oil field off the east coast of Newfoundland and the Venture gas field off of Nova Scotia were discovered. In 1980, the Dalhousie University awarded Dory a Doctor of Engineering, Honoris Causa. The same year he received a Distinguished Achievement Award from the Colorado School of Mines.
In 1982 Mobil transferred him back to the headquarters in New York, this time as Producing Manager. He was responsible for the Mobil Exploration and Producing Affiliates in Europe and Africa and worked extensively with ELF, Total, and Shell.
In 1985 Dory retired from Mobil and began work as a consultant. He was a consultant to Nissho Iwai and LNG Japan for more than twenty years. He also provided advice to various groups in Southeast Asia, the United States, Canada, Peru and Russia.
Dory died on September 24, 2010, in Arizona and is survived by his five children, Sandra, Andrea, Dorington III, Sara, and Oliver; six grandchildren, and two great- grandchildren.
This obituary has been modified. A family member pointed out that the original printed version contained several inaccuracies and provided the revised language above.