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Alberta Online Encyclopedia
Canadian Petroleum Heritage
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Aubrey Kerr

Aubrey Kerr’s career in the petroleum industry has brought him fame as a writer. Kerr was from Orillia, Ontario and in 1942 he received his Master's Degree in Geology from the University of British Columbia. Kerr began working for Imperial Oil and was at the Leduc No.1 discovery in 1947. As a District Geologist, he was responsible for the geology of the two relief holes drilled to shut down Atlantic No. 3. By 1949, Kerr decided to move on and became Chief Geologist for Home Oil. Later, he chose to leave the private sector and take a position as Senior Geologist for the National Energy Board in 1960. Kerr returned to Calgary in 1975 to manage oil and gas rights under Indian Treaty Lands until his retirement.

During those years, Kerr realized the importance of recording oil industry history. He began his writing career in 1978 as editor and writer of the Journal of Canadian Petroleum Technology. Working with the Provincial Archives in early 1980, Kerr founded the Petroleum Industry Oral History Project, which to date has over 300 interviews housed at the Glenbow Museum. In his writings, Kerr draws from his many roles in the oil and gas industry. He has written many non-fiction books dealing with the history of Alberta and the petroleum industry. In 1994, Kerr won the Lifetime Achievement Award and Book of the Year Award from the Petroleum History Society. He also writes articles on his own experiences for multiple publications including the Canadian Society of Exploration Geophysicists of which he is a member.

In 1998, Kerr was inducted into the Canadian Petroleum Hall of Fame. In that year, the University of Calgary conferred on him an Honorary Doctor of Laws. Kerr is also a volunteer with the Kerby Centre since 1995. He has completed a history of that senior facility.


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