Historical Background and Corporate Structure
As numerous problems arose between landowner-lessors and the oil and gas companies in the development of the Hugoton Gas Field in the 1930's and 1940's, A. E. "Gus" Kramer, a practicing lawyer of Hugoton and longtime Stevens County resident, recognized the need for an organization to protect the rights of landowners in the Field.
In late 1947 and early 1948, Kramer arranged for meetings with landowners in the nine southwest Kansas counties then encompassing the Hugoton Field.  Following those meetings and a meeting in Hugoton with all of the 27 county commissioners of the nine southwest Kansas counties, a group of landowners formed a nonprofit corporation designated as the Southwest Kansas Royalty Owners Association.
Articles of Incorporation were filed in February, 1948, with the Kansas Secretary of State.  The stated purpose of the corporation is "to foster, protect and further in all proper respects the rights and interests of the mineral owners." 
The following persons, all highly respected farmers or business leaders in Southwest Kansas, were the SWKROA incorporators and its first Board of Directors:  A. E. Kramer, Harry L. Lightcap, and John Persinger of Hugoton, Stanley Julian of Johnson, Fred Shore of Big Bow, I C. Wiatt and Cecil Tate of Lakin, Frank G. Boles and Oliver S. Brown of Liberal, Claude F. Wright and F. S. Williams of Garden City, L. O. Stanley and John C. Jones of Satanta, R. H. Joyce and Dan C. Sullivan of Ulysses, A. W. DesMarteau of Syracuse, Neil Bishop of Kendall, and Delmas Littell and Howard Drew of Rolla, Kansas. 
The following have served as presidents of the organization since its inception:  Harry L. Lightcap of Hugoton (1948-1952); Oliver S. Brown of Liberal (1952-1971); Robert Larrabee of Liberal (1971-1993); Vincent Youngren of Hugoton (1993-1994); Jack Hayward formerly of Elkhart, (1994-1998); Phil Dick of Garden City (1998-2002); John Crump of Lakin (2002-2006); Joe Larrabee of Liberal (2006-2008); Ralph Goodnight of Lakin (2008-2011); K. Ted Metcalf of Liberal (2011-2014); and Bill Light of Rolla (2014-current). 
Three executive secretaries have served the organization:  A. E. Kramer of Hugoton (1948-1968), Bernard E. Nordling of Hugoton (1968-1994); and Erick E. Nordling of Hugoton (1994-current). 
In addition, there has been a personal and generational commitment of attorneys from the Fleeson, Gooing, Coulson & Kitch, LLC law firm, of Wichita, who have served as General Counsel for our Association:  Howard T. Fleeson served as our initial General Counsel from 1948 until 1957; Dale M. Stucky served as General Counsel for the Association from 1957-1993; Gregory J. Stucky served from 1993-2014; and David G. Seely, has served as General Counsel (2014- current).