William C. Nelson

2013 Co-Op Hall of Fame Inductee  


Bill Nelson

Education

William C. Nelson was born in St. Louis, Missouri and attended Kirkwood High School. He then entered Purdue University to study chemical engineering. During his time as a student, he joined the Co-Op program because it provided an opportunity for him to apply concepts he learned in class to the workplace. He received his bachelor’s degree in 1974 and earned his master’s degree in 1975.

Professional Career

After graduating in 1975, Nelson accepted a position in Dallas, Texas with Atlantic Richfield Corporation’s (ARCO) research and development facilities. He used his computer programming background to create a workable model that predicted drilling hole temperatures for permafrost conditions. At this time, he began to focus as a petroleum engineer and relocated to Anchorage, Alaska in 1978 to work on the development of the Prudhoe Bay Field. His interest began to shift to the economic aspects of oil and gas, and Nelson moved into supervisory and management positions. After more than 25 years, Nelson became senior vice president of Exploration & Production with Hunt Petroleum Corporation in 2001 until 2008. In 2009, he became the executive consultant for Peregrine Petroleum LLC and currently works there today. Throughout his career, Nelson has lived in Anchorage, Dallas, Denver, Jakarta, and London.

Co-Op Alumnus

Nelson worked five sessions with Mallinckrodt Chemical Company based in St. Louis with the Co-Op program. He said that program provided him employment during an uncertain economic environment in the 1970s.

Purdue News

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