Ted Collins Jr., Fort Worth energy legend, dies at 79

Ted Collins Jr. 

C.O. Ted Collins Jr.


Ted Collins Jr., a Fort Worth native who served as a director at several large energy companies including RSP Permian Inc. and Oasis Petroleum Inc. died unexpectedly on Jan. 28. He was 79.

Collins led a 50-year career that including his co-founding of Collins and Young LLC. The company amassed more than 100,000 acres in the Barnett Shale, which later sold for more than $3 billion. He also served as president of HNG Oil Co., which later became Enron Oil and Gas Co.

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In 2006, he received a lifetime achievement award from the American Association of Professional Landmen along with several other awards, including his 2009 induction into the Permian Basin Petroleum Museum Hall of Fame.

“Ted’s distinguished career in the oil and gas exploration and production business spanned more than five decades, and we are very sad to lose him both as a good friend and as a wise counselor to Kimbell Royalty Partners. We will miss his advice, sense of humor and friendship,” said Robert Ravnaas, chairman and CEO of Kimbell Royalty Partners’ general partner.

“On behalf of the board of directors and the entire RSP Permian team, we want to extend our deepest sympathies to Ted’s family,” RSP CEO Steve Gray said in a news release. “In addition to being a good friend and a prominent figure in the energy industry, he was a valued member of the RSP Permian family and we are forever grateful for his contributions.”

Kimbell Royalty Partners LP (NYSE: KRP) said Mr. Collins joined the board of directors of Kimbell’s general partner at the time of the company’s 2017 IPO.

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C.O. Ted Collins Jr. was born on May 26, 1938 in Fort Worth, Texas to Clyde Otto “Ted” Collins and Victoria Madden Collins. His father, C.O. “Ted” Collins, was a successful oil man and wildcatter.

Ater graduating from Arlington Heights High School, Ted Collins Jr. pursued a Bachelor of Science degree in Geological Engineering, graduating from the University of Oklahoma in 1959.

He started his career in the business as a Petroleum Engineer with Pan American Petroleum, where he was stationed in West Texas. At 26, he struck out on his own as an independent, buying and trading leases and prospects with several partners. Just a few years later, he and a few partners created American Quasar Petroleum Company, which at one point was the largest publicly traded drilling fund in the country. In 1982, Ted left American Quasar to become president of HNG Oil Company which would later merge into and ultimately become Enron Oil and Gas, now known as EOG Resources. In 1988, Collins partnered with an old friend with whom he had worked at America Quasar, Herb Ware, to start Collins and Ware. Collins and Ware was one of the first companies to use 3D seismic technology as an exploration tool, which helped them find a number of new discoveries including Fusselman/Ellenburger zones. Ware and Collins ultimately operated numerous wells in multiple basins, including the Permian and Williston Basins.

Collins later partnered with an old Fort Worth friend, George Young, to form Collins and Young LLC. Together they built a sizable position in the Barnett Shale.

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He served on a number of Boards over the years including most recently RSP Permian, Energy Transfer Partners, Oasis Petroleum and Kimbell Royalty Partners.

Collins was the recipient of number industry awards and honors, including the 2006 AAPL Lifetime Achievement award, the 2008 Permian Basin Petroleum Association Top Hand award, induction into the Permian Basin Petroleum Museum Hall of Fame, along with Herb Ware, in 2009, the 2017 Hart Energy’s Industry Leader Award, and he was set to receive the 2018 Mewbourne Distinguished Alumni Award from the University of Oklahoma.

He served as the Chairman of Midland Wildcat Committee since 1984, was past President of the Permian Basin Petroleum Association, the Permian Basin Landman’s Association, the Petroleum Club of Midland, and was an Advisory Director of TPH Asset Management. He was on the Midland Memorial Hospital Board of Governors, a member of the Exchange Club of Fort Worth, and a Board Member of the CLL Global Research Foundation. He was actively involved in the OU Foundation as part of the Seed Sowers Society and was a member of the Longhorn Foundation. He was also a member of the All American Wildcatters, a group to which he was very proud and honored to be included.

Collins was preceded in death by his father and mother. He is survived by his wife Diana; his mother-in-law Joyce Souza; sister Patricia and her husband Bill Massad; three sons, J. Patrick Collins and his wife Lindsey Collins, Michael Collins, and Teddy and his wife, Rocia Collins; and his grandchildren.

The family would love to hear, see and share your memories and photos of Ted, which can be sent to memories@collinsog.com. His life and memory will be shared during a visitation from 6 p.m. – 8 p.m. at The Branch at Nalley-Pickle & Welch on Wednesday, January 31, 2018. His Memorial Service will be at First Presbyterian Church of Midland at 3:00 pm on Thursday, February 1, 2018. A Memorial Reception will follow at the Petroleum Club of Midland at 4 p.m. Collins will be laid to rest at a private burial service at Greenwood Memorial Park in Fort Worth on Saturday, February 3, 2018. A Memorial Reception will take place following the burial at 12:00 pm at River Crest Country Club on Saturday.

Honorary pallbearers are Bill Bowerman, Bill Granberry, Bob Garbrecht, Brett Smith, Clifton Morris, Dick McMillan, Don Evans, Don Jones, George Young, Jim Alsup, Joe Liberty, Joe Martin, Joe O’Neill, Jon Brumley, Mac Thompson, Mike Grimm, Mike Wallace, Pete Russey, Phil Pritchett, Randy Geiselman, and Robert Tucker Jr.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to The Lighthouse for the Blind in Fort Worth (legal name Tarrant County Association for the Blind) located at 912 W. Broadway Avenue, Fort Worth 76104. Or https://lighthousefw.org/donate/

Arrangements are under the direction of Nalley-Pickle & Welch Funeral Home & Crematory of Midland. Online condolences may be made at www.npwelch.com