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Business Bio: Western Refining

Moved to Give Back

Sense of community fuels Western Refining

Gary HansonWithout Western Refining, many of us would have a tough time getting around. The independent oil refiner and marketer supplies all the jet fuel to Tucson International Airport and about 25 percent of fuel to Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport. Western also has more than 220 convenience stores, including more than 35 Giant stores in Arizona.

“Based on the Fortune 500, if our headquarters were based in Arizona, we would be the fourth largest company in the state,” says Gary Hanson, vice president of corporate communications(left).

In 2012, Western moved most of its corporate office employees from El Paso to its administrative offices in Tempe. The company has about 450 employees in the Valley and nearly 1,200 statewide. It’s a big reason Western is focused on being a good neighbor.

“We have employee committees in all of our major locations and they review opportunities and see where we can get involved from a volunteer standpoint and where we can make financial contributions as a company,” says Hanson.

For several years, Western has partnered with Phoenix Children’s Hospital to ensure every child leaves the hospital with a safety seat. Dozens of employees devote their weekends to the Special Olympics Arizona Summer Games where Western sponsors the Olympic village so athletes have plenty of space to relax, eat, drink and have fun between their events. 

One of Western’s newest partnerships is with the Arizona Diamondbacks Foundation’s 50/50 Raffle. During home games, raffle tickets are sold with the winner collecting half the jackpot with the other half benefiting youth baseball field development and sports outreach across the state. Western has also supported the Boys and Girls Clubs, the Phoenix Symphony, the Musical Instrument Museum and the Phoenix Zoo.

“We do similar things in Tucson, Albuquerque and El Paso,” says Hanson. “It’s just a part of who we are.”

 
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By Christina Estes

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