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Linden Jay Richards


Oklahoma-born Linden Jay Richards began his career as geophysicist and rose to top floor of one of Canada's most significant oil and gas companies during the boom years following the Leduc discovery.


He was known industry-wide as an explorer, and as a leader both within his company and in the industry at large.


Richards began his career in 1937 working as a geophysicist in the oilfields of Oklahoma for Continental Oil Co. The discovery of Leduc brought him to Alberta in 1948 where he hired on as the chief geophysicist for Hudson's Bay Oil and Gas Co.


Richards is noted as an outstanding geophysicist whose scientific work led to many of the oil and discoveries in Western Canada still producing today. He conducted and supervised the technical work that led to the discoveries of fields including: Sturgeon Lake South, Bellshill Lake, Sundre, Harmatten-Elkton, Clarke Lake, Pine Creek, Beaver Creek, Virginia Hills, Milligan Creek, Westward Ho, West Drumheller and Kaybob South.


These discoveries elevated Hudson's Bay Oil and Gas Company into the first rank of Canadian producing companies, and Richard's career climbed with the company's fortunes. By 1960, he had become the executive vice-president of the company.


His early success in finding oil and gas in Western Canada is credited with bringing much-needed risk capital for exploration into Alberta and the West. Richards became president and chief executive officer of Hudson's Bay Oil and Gas in 1965 and held that role for five years. He then took the helm at Quintana Exploration Company for three years before becoming chairman of Total Petroleum North America for three years.


Richards was a tireless worker for the Canadian industry, serving as a governor of the Canadian Petroleum Association for many years and acting as one of its strongest chairpersons. He was also co-founder of the Canadian Society of Exploration Geophysicists. Richards also served as a dedicated representative for the industry in negotiating with the federal and provincial governments on issues like taxes, royalties, land use and pipeline permitting and exports. Richards passed away in 1991.


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