There are many reasons to tell Neil McMurry's story.
First, like other Wyomingites of his generation, Neil’s life reflects an extraordinary period in the history of the twentieth century. The story of his opportunities and challenges tells the story of Wyoming and the nation at this time. He was a product of the Great Depression, growing up with little financially. Together with thousands of young men his age, he put on the United States Army uniform and served his country overseas during World War II. He returned home to Wyoming, married, and raised a family. While building his career in the highway construction business, he and his partner, Vern Rissler, quite literally built much of Wyoming.
Second, Neil is a true entrepreneur. He takes personal risks, assumes responsibility, and works incredibly hard. His business successes have positively impacted Wyoming and its citizens in many ways. Perhaps most important is how he succeeds: through honest business dealings. His handshake and his word are better than any written contract.
One of Neil's well-known business ventures is his successful redrilling for natural gas in the Jonah Field and the Pinedale Anticline in southwestern Wyoming. Completed by Neil and his partners in McMurry Oil Company in the 1990s, this natural gas play is heralded as one of the most significant on-shore natural gas developments in the second half of the twentieth century.
Given that we currently live in a post-recession era – arguably one of our nation’s worst – which was brought on by unethical business practices, it is refreshing to read about a successful man with high moral standards for himself and those around him. We need to be reminded that there are those who have achieved their ambitions with their characters intact. Neil McMurry is proof that it can be done.
Neil also believes that with financial success, one has an obligation to give back. Neil’s foresight, generosity, and philanthropy have directly benefited thousands of people, especially those whom he respects the most: the hard-working men and women of Wyoming. He is a role model for all.