Thursday, December 22, 2011


The New York State Oil Producers Association has created the Karney Cochran Scholarship at the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford, in memory of a prominent Wellsville, N.Y., oil producer.
            Stephen D. Plants, secretary of the association, said that it has scholarships at several local colleges and wanted to create one at Pitt-Bradford because of its contributions to the area oil industry through its petroleum technology programs, first in the 1970s and ’80s and again today.
            The $1,500 annual scholarship will be awarded to a student from Cattaraugus, Allegany or Steuben counties in New York, or McKean or Potter counties in Pennsylvania.
            Cochran, Plants said, was a natural choice for an honoree.
            “He was a pretty impressive guy,” Plants said, “a brilliant man who had traveled the world.”
            Cochran grew up in Tulsa, Okla., and attended Oklahoma A&M (now Oklahoma State), where he earned a degree in engineering. After moving to the northeast, he took a job in 1938 with the Empire Gas and Oil Co. which was owned by the Bradley Producing Co. in Wellsville N.Y.
            He retired from Bradley in 1976 as vice president, and he and his wife started their own producing company, which they closed when the price of oil bottomed out in 1985.
            He took an active part in several national oil groups and was a former director of both the Independent Petroleum Association of America and the American Petroleum Institute.
            For more information on creating a scholarship at the University of Pittsburgh at Bradford, contact Jill McInroy-Ballard, executive director of institutional advancement, at or (814)362-5091.

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