Bill Koch excels as an international businessman, chemical engineer, art collector, and world-class sailor. As the founder of Oxbow Carbon, Koch has created a business which Forbes Magazine consistently recognizes as one of the top 500 privately held companies in America.
In his role as founder and chief executive officer of Oxbow Carbon, Koch has built one of the largest marketing companies of petroleum and calcined coke in the world. With annual sales in excess of $4 billion and offices in over 40 countries, Oxbow Carbon is the largest producer of calcined coke, a key ingredient in the manufacturing of aluminum, and a key supplier of sulfur, sulfuric acid and fertilizers. The company also owns and operates one of the most productive underground coal mines in the United States, producing nearly five million tons of super-compliant coal annually.
Koch’s unique business approach stems from his T3 philosophy – talent, teamwork and technology. It is a philosophy that encourages employee participation, rewards teamwork and relies on scientific research to make calculated risks. Koch used the T3 philosophy to win the 1992 America’s Cup, the most coveted prize in sailing. In addition to winning sailing’s highest honor, Koch is a four time world sailing champion.
Born in Wichita, Kansas, Koch is a graduate of Culver Military Academy. He received a bachelors of science, master’s and doctoral degree in chemical engineering from Massachusetts Institute of Technology. While at MIT, Koch was elected to engineering honor societies, Tau Beta Pi and Sigma Chi. He also was the recipient of the Roger de Friez Hunneman Prize, awarded to outstanding scholarship and research in chemical engineering.
Koch's world class art collection has been the subject of numerous exhibitions and he has loaned many masterpieces to museums around the world. He is a strong supporter of the magnet arts programs in the public schools and is the founder of Oxbridge Academy, an innovative private high school located in West Palm Beach. He has served on the boards of the Museum of Fine Arts, University Hospital, the Smithsonian Museum for American Art, the President’s Circle for the National Academy of Arts, Science and Medicine, and chaired the Crime Commission for the State of Kansas.
Together with his wife Bridget Rooney-Koch, he and his six children reside in Palm Beach, Florida.