Athabasca Oil Corporation’s board of directors appointed ROB BROEN, SPE, to the recently created position of chief operating officer (COO). As COO, Broen now leads all the company’s operations, including operating asset areas (light oil and thermal oil) and all technical functions. Broen joined Athabasca in November 2012 as senior vice president light oil with responsibility for the Light Oil Division; Drilling and Completions Services; and Health, Safety, and Environment. He has more than 20 years’ industry experience. Before joining Athabasca, he managed a capital budget of over USD 1 billion and a 120,000-BOEPD North American shale gas portfolio (Montney, Duvernay, Marcellus, and Eagle Ford) for Talisman Energy.
Broen began his 18-year career with Talisman as an operations engineer in Chauvin, Alberta, Canada. At Talisman, he held increasingly more senior roles, including president, Talisman Energy USA, based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; and senior vice president, North American shale, based in Calgary. He was an officer and member of the board of directors of Talisman Energy USA. Before joining Talisman, Broen was a production and completion engineer with Wascana Energy, stationed in Swift Current, Saskatchewan, Canada. He earned a BS degree in chemical engineering from the University of Alberta, and is a graduate of the Ivey Executive Program at the Richard Ivey School of Business, University of Western Ontario.
STEPHEN I. CHAZEN, SPE, Occidental Petroleum Corporation’s president and chief executive officer (CEO), was elected chairman of the American Petroleum Institute’s board of directors. This elected 1-year position was effective 1 January 2014. He has more than 40 years’ industry experience. Chazen joined Occidental Petroleum in 1994 as executive vice president–corporate development. Since then, he has held numerous positions within the company. He was named COO in 1999 and elected president and chief financial officer in 2007. Three years later, he was named president and COO and elected to the company’s board of directors. He became president and CEO the following year.
Chazen also serves on the boards of directors for Ecolab Incorporated, the Aquarium of the Pacific, and the Catalina Island Conservancy. Before joining Occidental, he was a managing director in the investment banking group of Merrill Lynch & Co. Chazen earned a PhD in geology from Michigan State University, a master’s degree in finance from the University of Houston, and a bachelor’s degree in geology from Rutgers College.
Denbury Resources appointed JOHN P. DIELWART, SPE, to its board of directors, thereby increasing the number of Denbury directors to 10. Dielwart has 35 years’ oil and gas industry experience, which includes being a founder, former CEO, and current member of the board of directors of ARC Resources, a Calgary-based, midsized, dividend-paying oil and gas company. He oversaw the growth of ARC from a USD‑200-million startup in 1996 to an USD-8-billion company at the time of his retirement in January 2013. Dielwart is currently vice chairman of ARC Financial Corp., a Canadian, energy-focused private equity manager, a position he assumed after his retirement.
Before joining ARC, he spent 12 years with a major oil and natural gas engineering consulting firm, as senior vice president and director. Dielwart began his career at a major oil and natural gas company, where he spent 5 years. He served two separate 3-year terms as a governor of the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers, including 18 months (2002 to 2004) as its chairman. Dielwart earned a BS degree (with distinction) in civil engineering from the University of Calgary. He is also a member of the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Alberta (APEGA).
Strategic Oil & Gas appointed DOUGLAS WRIGHT, SPE, as vice president, engineering and corporate development. He has been with Strategic since June 2013 as vice president, business development. In his new role, Wright is now responsible for engineering, reserves, and developing corporate strategy. Additionally, he oversees the planning and execution of Strategic’s capital spending budget.
Wright has over 29 years’ experience in western Canada’s energy industry, with expertise focused on reserve evaluations for both annual reporting and acquisition/disposition analysis. He has worked for several major international companies, including Texaco, Imperial Oil, ConocoPhillips, and Anadarko. Most recently, he served in a senior management role at Perpetual Energy. Wright graduated from the University of Calgary with a BS degree in chemical engineering and from Athabasca University’s Centre for Innovative Management with an MBA. He is also a member of the APEGA and Society of Petroleum Evaluation Engineers.
MICHAEL J. ECONOMIDES, SPE, died 1 December 2013. He was 64. At the time of his death he worked in several capacities, including professor at the Cullen College of Engineering, University of Houston; worldwide petroleum consultant; and editor-in-chief of two energy-related publications.
Economides was born 6 September 1949 in Cyprus. A Greek national, he became a US citizen in 1982. At age 19, he came to the US as a Fulbright scholar, earning BS and MS degrees in chemical engineering at the University of Kansas.
From 1980 to 1984, he and his wife, Christine Ehlig-Economides, SPE, designed curricula for and established a petroleum engineering program at the University of Alaska. In 1984, he received a PhD in petroleum engineering from Stanford University.
From 1984 to 1989, Economides worked at Dowell Schlumberger, then for 3 years as director of the Institute of Drilling and Production and petroleum engineering professor at Leoben Mining University in Leoben, Austria.
In 1993, Economides was principal founder of the Global Petroleum Research Institute at Texas A&M University, serving as its director and chief scientist for 5 years, while also a petroleum engineering professor at A&M. He joined the University of Houston in 1998.
Economides consulted on petroleum projects in more than 70 countries and taught more than 300 advanced petroleum-related short courses worldwide. He authored or coauthored close to 300 technical papers and several book chapters and encyclopedia entries. He edited or wrote around a dozen technical books on topics such as hydraulic fracturing and natural gas engineering. His best-known popular book, The Color of Oil: The History, the Money and the Politics of the World’s Biggest Business, co-written with R.E. Oligney, was published in 2000 and became a bestseller. Economides also coauthored several other general books centering on geopolitics and the petroleum industry.
He served SPE as session chairperson at numerous conferences and forums worldwide and member of several technical and editorial review committees. He was chosen as a Distinguished Lecturer for 1991–92.
Economides became an SPE Distinguished Member (1994) and received the SPEI Production and Operations Award (1997). The Russian Academy of Natural Sciences awarded him the Kapitsa Medal of Honor and the Albert Einstein Medal of Honor (2004). He received two honorary doctorates.
Economides is survived by his wife Christine and his sons John and Alexander.
John D. Albright, Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA
W.A. Downie, Banchory, Scotland
Van B. Goff, Spring, Texas, USA
William W. Liddell Jr., Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA
Dana G. McCarty, Bellevue, Washington, USA
Douglas Paul Taylor, Corpus Christi, Texas, USA
Roy K. Valla, Odessa, Texas, USA
Don G. Whitten, Houston, Texas, USA