David Wiman was born in Findlay, Ohio on July 4, 1941. Findlay at that time was the headquarters for the Ohio Oil Company (now Marathon). While growing up, he heard stories of the romance and excitement of petroleum geology from seasoned international explorers working for the company. David selected his lifelong profession and never looked back (with the possible exceptions of how to make a living fly-fishing or as a gourmet cook).
He attended the Colorado School of Mines, but returned to Ohio where he earned a B.S. degree in geology from Kent State University. Subsequently, he did graduate work in geology and geophysics at Kansas State University and later in his career, recognizing the importance of the business side of petroleum exploration, earned an M.B.A. from the University of Miami.
David’s interest in international exploration was realized when he joined Texaco in 1966 and was assigned to their office in Bogota, Columbia. (He was either very lucky or very persuasive.) His work included field mapping, subsurface correlation, and detailed field studies of their concessions. Several major discoveries resulted from the studies. He subsequently worked on projects in Trinidad, Argentina, Brazil, Guatemala, Paraguay, and Uruguay. He resigned from Texaco in 1982 and joined Tenneco, serving as senior staff geologist in their International Division in Houston.
Tenneco felt he should get some domestic exploration experience and transferred him to Denver in 1986 as division geologist for their Rocky Mountain Division. Following the sale of Tenneco, David joined British Gas, which purchased Tenneco’s International Division properties, and moved to Quito, Ecuador as general manager for British Gas’ operations there. In 1991, he was transferred back to Houston to work in the company’s International Division.
In 1994, he became an exploration consultant, working with several international ventures, including a lengthy assignment with Meridian International Corp., and successor company Ocean Energy, Inc.
David was a member of AAPG for 32 years and was a Certified Petroleum Geologist. Throughout their 35-year marriage, he and his wife Jeanie shared countless international adventures. At the time of his death, they were residents of The Woodlands, Texas.
The W. David Wiman Memorial Grant is awarded annually to a deserving graduate student through the American Association of Petroleum Geologists Foundation Grants-in-Aid program. Funding comes from an AAPG Foundation endowment established by his family, Ocean Energy, Inc. and other friends and colleagues.