Saturday, September 23, 2023

Harold D. Courson

Pampa High School Class of 1952



Harold D. Courson was born in the Old Worley Hospital in Pampa, Texas to loving parents: Mr. and Mrs. G. H. Courson. As an only child, Harold grew up at the Phillips Camp, 12 miles south of Pampa and attended school through the 6th grade at the Hopkins School #2 located there in the camp. He attended junior and senior high school in Pampa and graduated from Pampa High School in 1952. From PHS he then went to college at Oklahoma A & M (now known as Oklahoma State University) where he attended three years.


Harold’s interest in the oil and gas fields came naturally. His father, G. H. “Kit” Courson, worked as field superintendent for Phillips Petroleum out of Pampa for 42 years and 9 months. Working in the oil and gas consulting business, Harold moved to Perryton in the 1960’s. Later he established Natural Gas Anadarko, Courson Oil and Gas Inc., Couroil Inc., and Harold D. Courson oil and gas companies. These companies now operate several hundred wells in this area.


Harold married Joyce Jones in 1968 in Perryton, Texas. They are the proud parents of four children (Rod Alexander, Ronda Alexander Orcutt, Kirk and Kent Courson), ten grandchildren, three of which who are now attending OSU, and one great-granddaughter. The Coursons reside on their ranch fifteen miles South of Perryton and remain active in the oil and gas, banking and ranching businesses.


Involvement in the betterment of Texas Panhandle has also kept Harold busy. He was mayor of Perryton for three terms where he was instrumental in assuring that the city would have adequate natural gas and water reservoirs for generations to follow. In addition to his mayor duties, he has found time to Chair the Panhandle Regional Planning Commission, President and Director of the Panhandle Producers and Royalty Owners’ Association, President and Board of Director of Cal Farley's Boys Ranch and Girlstown since 1986 to the present, Chairman of the Archaeology Committee for the Texas Historical Commission, Council member on the National Petroleum Council, Board member of the Harrington Cancer Center and of the Amarillo Area Foundation, Harold Courson doesn't stop with these numerous activities. In addition, he has established the Courson Family Foundation which strives to assist the people of the Panhandle who are less fortunate including establishing collegiate scholarships. Two other endeavors he takes pride in are the Courson Farm and Ranch Center in Clarendon and the Clarendon College-Pampa Center in Pampa.

Some of Harold’s honors include: Perryton’s Citizen of the Year, Kiwanis Workhorse of the Year, Rotary’s Paul Harris Fellow Award, Seven Who Care Award, Perryton’s Gold Star Citizen, 1998 Philanthropist of the Year, 1998 Governor of Texas Award for Historic Preservation, and in 2000 chosen as one of the Top 100 of the Past Century to Make a Difference in the High Plains Area.


Harold continues to be an active part in helping the youth of our area. He loves young people and is always a friend to them. Lots of them consider him as their Pap Paw! His hobbies all involve being a part of his grandchildren’s lives. He loves attending their sports activities, taking them hunting and fishing; He is always interested in what his grandchildren are doing. He even tries his best to beat his grandsons at golf.


A special thanks goes to former Pampa teachers for their guidance: English Literature teacher and coach, Aubra Nooncaster, Madge Jones, Eloise Lane, Mary Dean Dozier, Jack Nichols, B. G. Gordon, Mabel Torvie, Madge Rusk, J. L. Spencer; plus, Coaches Tips, Lyons, and McNeely. Years growing up in Pampa would not be complete without friends and fellow schoolmates including Bill McPherson and the Seawrights. Pampa High School truly is the "Best in the West."


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