William C. Liedtke Jr (September 27, 1924 — March 1, 1991)[1][2] was an American petroleum executive, best known as the co-founder of Pennzoil with his older brother J. Hugh Liedtke.[2][3]

William C. Liedtke
Born(1924-09-27)September 27, 1924
Tulsa, Oklahoma, U.S.
DiedMarch 1, 1991(1991-03-01) (aged 66)
Houston, Texas, U.S.
EducationAmherst College, (BA)
University of Texas School of Law (LL.B.)
Occupation(s)oil executive, attorney
Known forco-founder of Pennzoil
SpouseBessie Johns Smith Liedtke (married 1949)

Early life edit

Liedtke was born in Tulsa, Oklahoma where his father was an attorney for the Gulf Oil Corporation.[2][3][4] During World War II, he and his brother, Hugh, served in the South Pacific as junior officers in the United States Navy.[2][3] They met on Saipan and agree to pursue a business career together if they survived the war.[3]

Liedtke earned a B.A. from Amherst College in 1945 and an LL.B. from University of Texas School of Law in 1949.[1][4] He moved to Midland, Texas, then opened a law practice with Hugh in 1949.[4]

Oil executive edit

In the 1950s, Hugh and Bill Liedtke had an office next to that of the Bush-Overbey Oil Development Company run by future United States President George H. W. Bush and Bush's neighbor, John Overbey.[5][6] In 1950s, the Liedtke's, Bush, and Overbey formed the Zapata Petroleum Corporation.[2][3][6] Zapata eventually merged with Pennzoil, and the Liedtkes took over United Gas Pipeline in 1956.[citation needed]

Liedtke served as the president of Pennzoil from 1967 to 1977.[2] In 1977, he left Pennzoil to lead the company's spin-off Pogo Producing Company.[2][7] Previously known as Pennzoil Offshore Gas Operators at its IPO in 1970, Pogo was an exploration and production subsidiary of Pennzoil set up to look for natural gas in the Gulf of Mexico.[2][7] Liedtke served as the chairman, director, CEO and president of Pogo until his retirement in 1991.[4]

Politics edit

Liedtke became the Texas finance chairman for Richard Nixon's Presidential campaigns in 1968 and 1972.[8] In September 1972, columnist Jack Anderson obtained a report compiled by the House Banking Committee indicating that Liedtke admitted to investigators that he had raised $100,000 in Mexico for Nixon's campaign fund.[9]

Liedtke later served on the Board of Trustees for Amherst College.[10] He also served as finance chair for the Bush-Quayle campaign of 1988[citation needed]

His son, William C. Liedtke III was nominated by President Bush in May 1992 for a seat on the five-member Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.[11]

References edit

  1. ^ a b Peroni, Douglas, ed. (1978). Who's Who in World Oil and Gas 1978/79. Financial Times Limited. p. 320. ISBN 9780900671937.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h "W. C. Liedtke, 66, A Pennzoil Founder And Friend of Bush". The New York Times. New York. AP. March 5, 1991. Retrieved May 4, 2015.
  3. ^ a b c d e Martin, Douglas (April 1, 2003). "J. Hugh Liedtke, 81, Oilman Who Bested Texaco in Court". The New York Times. New York. Retrieved May 11, 2015.
  4. ^ a b c d "William C. Liedtke, Jr. 1995" (PDF). petroleummuseum.org. The Petroleum Hall of Fame. Retrieved May 6, 2015.
  5. ^ Bush, George W. (2014). 41: A Portrait of My Father. London: Ebury Publishing. pp. 61–62. ISBN 9780553447781. OCLC 883645289.
  6. ^ a b George Bush Foundation (2005). "A Legacy of Service". www.bushmonument.com. George Bush Monument. Archived from the original on April 9, 2014. Retrieved May 13, 2015.
  7. ^ a b "Pennzoil". 2010-06-15.
  8. ^ Bryce, Robert (2004). Cronies: Oil, the Bushes, and the Rise of Texas, America's Superstate. PublicAffairs. pp. 98. ISBN 9781586481889.
  9. ^ Barnes, Dick; Schwartz III, H.L. (September 13, 1972). "Mexican money tied to Nixon campaign fund". The Free Lance-Star. Vol. 89, no. 216. Fredericksburg, Virginia. AP. pp. 1, 18. Retrieved May 19, 2015.
  10. ^ Communications, Emmis (October 1970). "The Alcalde".
  11. ^ "Liedtke Doubts He'll Gain Post". 1992-11-05.