2013 Distinguished Alumnus
As the son of a career Air Force man, Joe Allison and his family led a nomadic life until his father retired to Little Rock in 1973. Allison then finished his junior and senior high school years at Joe T. Robinson High School and entered the newly named University of Central Arkansas in 1975.
At UCA, he discovered his life’s true loves. First, the challenge and enjoyment that chemistry has to offer. The second, and more important, was the challenge and enjoyment of courting and marrying his wife of 34 years, Laura Hollenbeck Allison. After UCA graduation in 1979, Joe and Laura entered graduate school at Purdue University. He finished his doctorate in inorganic chemistry in 1983.
After graduation from Purdue, Allison started his career in Research and Development with Conoco, now Phillips 66, in Ponca City, Okla. Through the nearly 30 years with the same company Allison has had an increasing amount of success and responsibility. Allison is currently a Research Fellow at Phillips 66 and is a company expert on alternative fuels, process chemistry and catalysis. He and his teams have taken 15 technologies to commercial or near-commercial applications. Allison is currently the inventor or co-inventor on nearly 60 US patents or patent pendings in addition to several dozen foreign patents.
Allison was named a 2010 Fellow of the American Chemical Society, a 2010 Purdue Department of Chemistry Distinguished Alumnus and awarded the 2008 Oklahoma Chemist Award. The Allisons established an endowed fund with the UCA Foundation to provide travel monies for UCA Chemistry students to present their undergraduate research results at national and regional meetings. They believe that the opportunity to present your research at a national stage is one of the most exciting and rewarding experiences of a lifetime.
The Allisons reside in Bartlesville, Okla.where he continues his career at Phillips 66 and she is a retired chief chemist from ConocoPhillips. They have two children, Brent of Tulsa, Okla. and Tara of Lubbock Texas.