Ridleians of Distinction - A - L
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Fairbank, Charles O. OR'59

Fairbank, Charles O. OR'59
Charlie Fairbank attended Ridley from 1956 to 1959 and then earned a biology degree from the University of Western Ontario and a teaching degree from Queen’s University. The great-grandson of Oil Springs pioneer John Henry Fairbank, Charlie took over Fairbank Oil — a company that has been in his family for 150 years—in 1973 and, under his leadership, the company has grown to 350 wells, producing about 24,000 barrels of oil a year from 600 acres. A fourth-generation member of a family that has produced oil longer than anyone in the world, he uses only 19th century technology to produce the oil, including the jerker line system his great-grandfather developed in 1863—a dedication to preserving history that earned Fairbank Oil field designation in 2010 as Ontario's first industrial-based Heritage Conservation District and recognition from the federal government as a National Historic Site. Charlie is passionate about preserving the history of Oil Springs and spreading the word about the Oil Heritage District, an area in Lambton County in southwestern Ontario that is as a living museum and testament to Canada's oil pioneers. In 2002, he co-authored The Oil Heritage Tour of Lambton County: The Birthplace of the Canadian Oil Industry.  He was inducted into the Canadian Petroleum Hall of Fame in 1997.
P.O. Box 3013, 2 Ridley Road St. Catharines, Ontario L2R 7C3 Canada 905 684 1889
With more than 700 students from 50+ countries, the largest boarding programme in Ontario and the third largest in Canada, Ridley College is a truly international, co-educational, day and boarding school of the world that prepares students for the world. It has provided enriching learning and life-shaping experiences focused on the arts, academics, and athletics since 1889. Ridley’s Lower School offers JK-Grade 8, its Upper School consists of Grade 9-PG, and Ridley graduates attend some of the top universities and colleges around the world. Ridley is the only independent boarding school in Canada and one of only three in North America authorized to offer the International Baccalaureate (IB) continuum programme.