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Richard I. Robinson

Distinguished Engineer: 1981

Degree: Chemical Engineering – 1952

Citation at Time of Nomination in 1981

A model of what an engineer can become is exemplified in the career of Richard I. Robinson. During his years at Texas Tech he was elected to Phi Eta Sigma scholastic honorary fraternity, the Student Council, and Who’s Who on Campus, and graduated in 1952 with the Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering.

Upon graduation from Tech, Mr. Robinson, who is a native of Corsicana, Texas, began his career with Phillips Petroleum Company by serving in various technical and supervisory capacities at Adams Terminal, the Phillips petrochemical complex on the Texas Gulf Coast, During the ensuing twenty–eight years he has advanced to his present position, vice president–refining division.

In 1964, he assumed his first management position as manager of the Polypropylene Plant, Pasadena, Texas. During his career with Phillips he has held several managerial posts, including director of technical services, and planning director of refining, Bartlesville, Oklahoma; acting refinery manager of the company’s former Avon refinery near San Francisco, California; and operations manager of the Sweeny Refinery at Sweeny, Texas. His outstanding performance at the Sweeny Refinery resulted in his promotion to General Manager of Ekofisk oil and natural gas liquids processing and terminating facilities at Teeside, England.

In 1980, his promotion to his present position, vice president–refining, over many other engineers, some very capable and with more years seniority, shows the confidence that Phillips Petroleum Company has in him. Those who are closely associated with Dick Robinson, as he is known to friends and colleagues, attribute his rapid rise not only to his ability as a capable engineer with excellent managerial and administrative expertise, but also to being able to fully motivate his subordinate staff and to work well with his peers.

Mr Robinson is a Registered Professional Engineer in Texas and is a member of the National and Oklahoma Societies of Professional Engineers. He currently holds membership in the American Petroleum Institute and the National Petroleum Refinery Association. In 1974, to further develop his professional advancement, he attended the advanced management program of the Harvard Graduate School of Business.

However, Dick Robinson has not neglected his civic responsibilities. He has served on the Board of Directors of the Chambers of Commerce in Pasadena and Sweeny, Texas and has been an active member of Rotary International in Pasadena, Texas, Bartlesville, Oklahoma, and Hartlespool, England.

Not only has he achieved a high position in his profession and community, but he rounds out his life by actively participating in the United Methodist Church, where he and his wife, Mary Marie, who is also a l952 Tech Graduate, are members.

It is with great pleasure that Texas Tech University recognizes the achievements of Richard I. Robinson with the designation DISTINGUISHED ENGINEER.

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