Michael O’Connor, who worked at Price/CIRI Construction and then served as president and CEO of Peak Oilfield Service Company from 1987 until his retirement in 2014, passed away Jan. 31 in Scottsdale, Ariz. He was 66.
Together with his employees, O’Connor built Peak from its humble beginnings to a premier service contractor. He worked with CIRI, Cook Inlet Tribal Council and Alaska’s People to get Alaska Native people hired at Peak and into union training programs.
O’Connor started the CIRI Golf Classic (then called the Peak Alaska Invitational Golf Tournament) in 1983. The tournament initially raised funds for The CIRI Foundation, a CIRI nonprofit. More recently, proceeds have gone to other charitable organizations dedicated to youth and education. Through the years, the tournament has raised more than $2 million.
“Mike was genuinely committed and passionate about building a better and stronger community. He didn’t just raise his hand for a cause—he jumped in with both feet, and his larger-than-life personality delivered results that ensured a brighter future for many organizations and people,” said CIRI President and CEO Sophie Minich, who worked with Mr. O’Connor for many years. He was co-founder and treasurer of the Scotty Gomez Foundation, which provides hockey opportunities for disadvantaged youth, and lent his time and talents to many other organizations, including the Anchorage Park Foundation, Blood Bank of Alaska, Lost Lake Breath of Life Run and Special Olympics Alaska.
O’Connor is survived by his wife, Shawn; two brothers; one sister; and many extended family members. He is also missed by his CIRI family.
The 2019 CIRI Golf Classic will be held in memory of Michael O’Connor. For more information about the Golf Classic, visit www.cirigolf.com.