History of Free Enterprise Institute

he Dr Pepper Museum is home to the W.W. “Foots” Clements Free Enterprise Institute. The Institute was formed in 1997 for the purpose of educating Texas students as well as adults about the free enterprise economic system that our country uses. One program, Advertising and Marketing Kid Style, uses the soft drink industry as a model to teach students about developing, producing, and marketing products. Since 1997 thousands of students from across Texas have taken part in our programs. For more information about these programs, visit the Free Enterprise Institute page.


The Institute was created in honor of W. W. “Foots” Clements, former CEO and President of the Dr Pepper Company. After his retirement from the Dr Pepper Company, Foots worked with the Dr Pepper Museum to make his dream of educating students about the free enterprise system a reality. He supported the programs developed by the Museum to teach the principles of that system. The W. W. “Foots” Clements Free Enterprise Institute has become one of his lasting legacies to the soft drink industry and the free enterprise system in this country.

So what can I see there when I visit?

The W. W. "Foots" Clements:  Mr. Dr Pepper free enterprise exhibit opened in the Spring of 2008. This exhibit built on the programs already presented by the Free Enterprise Institute by examining the free enterprise system through Foots Clement’s career from route salesman to corporate leader. Highlights of the exhibit include Mr. Clement’s office from the Dr Pepper Company’s headquarters on Mockingbird Lane in Dallas as well as interactive games designed to explain principles of the free enterprise system.

If you are interested in learning more about our Advertising and Marketing Kid Style program, or any of our other programs, click here.

Who was W.W. “Foots” Clements?

Woodrow Wilson Clements was born in Windham Springs, Alabama in 1914 and earned the nickname, “Foots” while playing football in high school. While attending college, he began working for a local bottler as a delivery truck driver at a time when Dr Pepper was trying to increase its visibility outside Texas. After 6 ½ years and three attempts, he was finally hired by the Dr Pepper Company. He rose steadily through the ranks being named vice president and general manager in 1957. He continued working his way up the corporate ladder and from 1974 to 1980, he served as president, CEO, and chairman of the board. And in 1986 he was honored with the title chairman emeritus. During Mr. Clements’ tenure with the company, Dr Pepper experienced phenomenal growth and became a major player in the soft drink industry.


For more information about the Free Enterprise Institute click here to visit their website!