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Jim Larter joins ranks of Southeast Sask. legends

Larter was born and raised in Estevan and has spent his career working in and around the Energy City.
Jim Larter joined the list of southeast Saskatchewan legends at the Saskatchewan Oil and Gas Show.

WEYBURN - Jim Larter, a long-time employee of the oil and gas industry in the Estevan area, was among those honoured as a Southeast Sask Legend during the Saskatchewan Oil and Gas Show June 5 in Weyburn. 

In the bio that was provided, it was noted that Larter has worked for 12 companies, three of which changed names, for a total of 15 banners during his career. And in most cases, he was the senior person on the ground as production foreman or production superintendent.

Larter was born and raised in Estevan and has spent his career working in and around the Energy City. His father was the local John Deere dealer who eventually became one of the founders of TS&M Supply before selling his stake.

Larter graduated from the Estevan Comprehensive School in 1980 and went into the retail business after high school, working at Frank's Men's Wear (now Frank's on Fourth) for six years.

"I almost bought the place, but I was offered a job in the oilpatch, and found out the money was a lot better," he recalled.

He married his high school sweetheart, Cheryl Stang, in 1985. They had two boys, Ryan in 1988 and Scott in 1990.

"I was a battery operator in 1988 when I started with Imperial Oil," he said.

He was 26 and working at Steelman. In 1991, the work area was sold to SaskOil, which became Wascana Energy a short time later. 

That was the beginning of a long trend of buyouts and mergers. At Wascana, he became an optimization operator. Then in 1996, he was offered a job as a production foreman at Upton Resources, a public company run by the local Dutton family.

"In 2003, the buying and acquisitions and selling took off," he said.

He was at StarPoint Energy in 2003, which became StarPoint Energy Trust. From that point on, Larter was a production superintendent or production foreman, essentially the same role, at various companies.

Around 2005, StarPoint Energy Trust was bought out by Acclaim, but they soon changed their name to Canetic Resources Trust. Brett Herman offered him a job at TriStar Oil & Gas in 2005.

In 2009, Petrobank/PetroBakken bought TriStar, and two years later Larter was offered a job at Renegade Petroleum. They were taken over by Spartan Energy Corp. He was with Spartan a month before being offered a job again by Herman, this time with Torc Oil & Gas in 2011.

"I was there for 10 years. It was my longest gig," he said.

Whitecap Resources took over Torc in 2021.

"It's kind of ironic that Grant Fagerheim was the president, because I grew up two blocks down the street from him," Larter said.

At that point, Larter was responsible for all of Whitecap's properties in southeast Saskatchewan, with the exception of the Weyburn Unit. Larter retired from Whitecap in May 2023. When he retired, his co-workers presented him with a mounted and framed collection of badges from most of those companies over the years. And throughout, he did his best to ensure those companies gave back to the local communities.

Over those years Larter was responsible at times for wells from Weyburn to Virden, Man., and even into North Dakota. Three times he was responsible for the same wells in the Steelman area, including starting and finishing there.

Larter's children followed him into the oilpatch, with Ryan working at Baker Chemicals and Scott at Primec.

The Saskatchewan Oil and Gas Show was held June 5 and 6 in Weyburn. Hundreds of indoor and outdoor exhibitors showcased their products, services, innovations and more for the public.

An appearance by Premier Scott Moe was a featured attraction on June 5.

Former prime minister Stephen Harper was the other featured speaker, as he delivered an address on June 6. Other speakers also appeared at the event.

Also celebrated as Southeast Sask Legends during the Oil and Gas Show were Paul Cheung, Dean Gillies, Dean Lemieux, Darcy Cretin and James Baker.

Long-time oil industry employee and leader Myron Stadnyk and former Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall were inducted into the Saskatchewan Oil and Gas Hall of Fame.

Del Mondor was named the Saskatchewan Oilman of the Year, and Ryan Birnie was selected as the Southeast Oilman of the Year (Double check).

Future editions of the Mercury and the Carlyle Observer will have more on those honoured. You can also find articles on our provincial news hub at