Petroleum Club Welcomes Changes in 2011

BIG PLANS: The current location of the Petroleum Club flanks other downtown buildings.

The Board of Directors for the Petroleum Club of Tulsa has announced that Tom Wynn has taken over as general manager of the club. Wynn’s hiring comes in the midst of the Petroleum Club’s campaign to revitalize itself and move later this year to the 41st floor of the First Place Tower.

Wynn brings to the Petroleum Club both years of experience and a fresh perspective. The 31-year-old Ponca City native began working in restaurants at the age of 14 and has served various management roles at both chain restaurants and fine dining establishments. Wynn earned an associate’s degree in business administration from Northern Oklahoma College, he is a graduate of the School of Hotel and Restaurant Administration program, and he received an Army Commendation Medal for his efforts during Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan.

“The Petroleum Club of Tulsa has a storied history in our community. There are many long-standing traditions, like the lunch buffet that members embrace, which we’re committed to continuing,” said Wynn. “However, as the club prepares to move into a new location, we will incorporate new features that will appeal to our current membership and also attract young and future petroleum industry executives.”
Working for and with petroleum industry leaders is nothing new for Wynn. His father was a petroleum retailer, and Wynn himself logged a couple of summers doing welding work at Oklahoma oil refineries.

“When we announced last fall that the Petroleum Club would be moving, the Club’s Board of Directors indicated that the move would be more than just a physical change. Tom’s hiring shows that we aren’t just changing addresses, but rather the Petroleum Club of Tulsa is reinventing itself,” said Gerald McLaughlin, Petroleum Club board president. “The Petroleum Club of Tulsa will once again offer members a first-class, fine dining experience and an opportunity to take pride and share in their industry’s rich heritage.”

Wynn’s first orders of business are to get to know Petroleum Club members and staff. Within the next 60 days, he also expects to refresh the menu, create special member events and social programming, and institute new inventory and efficiency measures.

Wynn comes to the Petroleum Club from Persimmon Ridge , the group that oversees Post Oak Lodge. Jim Barnard, of Persimmon Ridge will serve as managing partner of the Petroleum Club.

McLaughlin believes the relationship between the Petroleum Club and Post Oak Lodge to be a natural fit. Both facilities cater to high-profile clientele, provide fine dining experiences and host numerous wedding receptions and other special events. “This partnership provides the club with talented and professional management that will elevate the hospitality experience our members receive,” said McLaughlin.

The present-day Petroleum Club of Tulsa was founded in 1951. Its first president, attorney Earl Sneed, created the International Petroleum Exposition in 1923, the world’s premier petroleum trade show that cemented Tulsa’s place as “Oil Capital of the World.” The Petroleum Club of Tulsa originally met at the Gem Theater before moving to the top three floors of the Petroleum Club building in 1963.

The Petroleum Club of Tulsa currently has 950 members, including leaders in the energy and industries that support oil and natural gas production.

Updated 02-07-2011

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