The Henry G. Bennett Distinguished Service Award


Lloyd Noble
Oil Producer and Philanthropist

Mr. Lloyd Noble was born in Ardmore, Oklahoma, in 1896 and is remembered as a prominent oil producer and philanthropist. Although he was only fifty-three when he died of a sudden heart attack in 1950, he left a great legacy and a commitment to ensure the success of future generations.

He began his career as an educator after receiving a teaching certificate from Southeastern State College in 1914. He taught for a brief time in a one-room schoolhouse in the Ardmore area. In 1921, following his service in World War I, he formed an oil drilling business. His entrepreneurial activities resulted in the development of companies operating in twenty-one states and Canada. He was known as one of the largest drilling contractors in the world and was chairman and president of several oil companies, including the Samedan Oil Company, Old Ocean Oil Company, and the J.S. Abercrombie Oil Company in Houston.

Mr. Noble was an outstanding citizen who devoted much of his time and resources for the benefit of humankind. He had a special interest in doing something to help prevent the devastating effects of erosion from over-cultivation and poor conservation practices. In this regard, he generously shared his economic success and formed the Samuel Roberts Noble Foundation in 1945 in honor of his father, with the initial goal to focus on soil and plant research and the improvement of the agricultural economy.

He has been quoted to say that ". . . the obligation that rests squarely on the shoulders of each generation is not what they inherit . . . but what they do with the wealth and power they have in their hands . . ." His humanitarian spirit has continued to live on through the Noble Foundation's support and vision of the needs of society today.

Through his many achievements and dedication to educational, social, and humanitarian concerns, Mr. Lloyd Noble has brought great honor and distinction to himself, his family, and the State of Oklahoma.

Year of Award: 1998