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Bill Douglass Receives Congressional Patriot Award

Reps. Fallon, Jackson bestow honor upon convenience-store, fuel industry icon
Bill Douglass Pat Fallon Ronny Jackson
Rep. Pat Fallon (left), Bill Douglass, Rep. Ronny Jackson | Photograph courtesy of Rep. Pat Fallon

Bill Douglass, founder of Douglass Distributing Co. and the Lone Star Food Stores convenience-store chain and an industry icon, has received the Congressional Patriot Award.

Rep. Pat Fallon (R-Texas) honored Douglass in a ceremony at the U.S. Capitol on April 10. Douglass was joined by his wife, brother and other members of his family and friends. Rep. Ronny Jackson (R-Texas) took part in recognizing Douglass’ life of achievement and service.

A native of Pennsylvania, Douglass graduated from Muhlenberg College in 1958 as a Dean’s List Scholar. He later joined the U.S. Marine Corps and Army serving as a first lieutenant specializing in combat intelligence.

“After his service to our country, Bill began his career in the oil industry as part of ExxonMobil’s sales team and quickly worked his way up to become one of their senior advisors,” said Fallon. “It was during this time that his entrepreneurial spirit pushed him to pursue his very own path in the oil distribution business. In the early 1980s, Bill left Exxon and purchased a petroleum distribution company in Sherman (Texas), now known as Douglass Distributing. Douglass Distributing employs over 400 individuals across North Texas whose establishments include gas stations, Lone Star convenience stores and fast-food franchises. If you drive through North Texas, you’ll likely stop at one of the many stores owned by Bill.”

In 1947, Humble Oil (later known as Exxon) established a railroad bulk plant in Sherman and Gainesville, Texas. In 1981, Bill Douglass purchased the Exxon consignee in Sherman, including the local Exxon Transport Division, Exxon Tank Wagon Division, Exxon Lubricants Division and Tires, Batteries & Accessories Division and through these acquisitions, Douglass Distributing was born.

Since its formation with three employees, to an enterprise employing more than 340, Bill Douglass and his family-run businesses have been recognized as leaders in the convenience store and wholesale fuel industries. He has been consistently recognized and honored for his achievements in the convenience store and fuel distribution industries, including serving as chairman of the National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS) in 2004-05 and the inaugural chairman in 2013 of the Fuels Institute, now the Transportation Energy Institute.

His company was also recognized as an Employer of the Year by the Chamber of Commerce and the Texas Workforce Commission.

Currently, Douglass is the chairman of the Texoma Medical Center’s board of trustees and is a board member at Austin College, where he received an honorary Ph.D. for his contributions to the Sherman community.

“I am proud of the work Bill has accomplished to innovate the next generation of convenience stores and improve the world around us,” said Fallon. “It is an honor to bestow Bill Douglass with the Patriot Award for his exceptional service to our nation and the people of North Texas.”

The Congressional Patriot Award “exists as a unique, meaningful recognition of the men and women in the [4th District in Texas] who give of their time and talent to make their community a better place for all. These Americans believe in things greater than themselves and demonstrate it through excellence, leadership, volunteerism, and selflessness—virtues without which our republic cannot thrive,” Fallon said.

Casey’s General Stores Inc., Ankeny, Iowa, acquired Douglass Distributing’s 22 Lone Star convenience stores in late 2023, which brings the retailer to Texas for the first time—its 17th state. The deal follows Douglass Distributing’s sale in late October of its wholesale businesses, consisting of propane, lubricant, diesel exhaust fluid (DEF) and wholesale and commercial fuel businesses to Commerce City, Colorado-based Offen Petroleum LLC.

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