William W. Keeler

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William W. Keeler

William W. Keeler

“The future is going to be worked out by people who have a pride in whatever their ancestry is…we’re all Americans. The world is going to be won by those who recognize their heritage.”
William Keeler, 1973


William Wayne Keeler was born in Texas, raised in Bartlesville, Oklahoma, where he graduated from high school in 1926, and graduated from the University of Kansas Engineering School. He joined Phillips Petroleum Company permanently in 1929 after working for the company over several summers. He was made manager of the refining department in 1945 and was elected vice president and a director and advanced to executive vice president in 1956, then became chairman of the executive committee in 1962. In 1960, he headed the first U.S. Petroleum Industry Exchange Delegation on a 30-day tour of Russia and its oil industry. Keeler became president and chief executive officer in 1967, and received the Oklahoma Petroleum Council’s Outstanding Oil Man award in 1971.

Fun fact

William Keeler was founder and a trustee of the Cherokee Foundation, was appointed Principal Chief of the Cherokees in 1949 and received awards for outstanding American Indian in 1957 and 1961.

Oklahoma connections

Keeler was raised in Bartlesville, Oklahoma.









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