Jack Swenson became the sixth inductee into the North Dakota Petroleum Council Hall of Fame at the Petroleum Council’s 27th Annual Meeting in Bismarck on September 17, 2008. Swenson has played a significant part in North Dakota’s oil and gas industry since 1963, when he was named the Executive Director of the North Dakota Petroleum Council. Jack has had a stake in oil and gas at both the state and regional levels throughout his career and maintained the motto of Petroleum Council Hall of Famers by working tirelessly in support of maintaining a strong oil and industry in North Dakota and the Rocky Mountains.
Swenson served in the U.S. navy in WWII before spending 25 years in radio and television broadcasting as a reporter, editor and talk show host in Bismarck and Fargo. In the Fall of 1963, Swenson was named the Executive Director of the North Dakota Petroleum Council. Swenson had spent nine years with the Petroleum Council when, in 1972, he was promoted to Central Region Director for the American Petroleum Institute in Chicago. In 1975, Swenson became the Executive Vice-President of the Rocky Mountain Oil & Gas Association in Denver, a position he held until his retirement in May of 1987.
During his 24 years in the industry, Swenson has garnered many awards for his contributions. In 1985, he became a member of the Rocky Mountain Petroleum Pioneers and in 1987, the year of his retirement, he was named the Denver Petroleum Club’s Man of the Year. Also in 1987, Swenson received the Independent Petroleum Association of America’s “Hard Hat Award” for his work on public land access issues.
In his earlier years, Swenson worked at the American Newspaper in Blackduck, Minnesota, and returned to northern Minnesota in 2001. He now writes a weekly column for that same newspaper and for the past six years has also been a director and officer of the electric cooperative serving that area.
Jack and his wife Vicki have four grown children, numerous grandchildren, and one great grandchild.