Chairperson's Monthly Newsletter July, 2019

July, 2019

Section Members,


Happy Independence Day! Thank you all for being a part of SPE. Without members, this is all for naught. I appreciate all of you, and if you ever have an idea or something you would like to share with me, please feel free to contact me directly.

As time goes on, I have learned that everyone is a student and everyone is a teacher. Regardless of age, experience, IQ or background, there’s always something to learn and always someone to teach. I’ve noticed this recently with my mentor, who has had a very different career path than mine. Even with our differences, I have learned a lot about working with people, how to approach problems, and different resources that are available for me to use. Similarly, I have run into scenarios where I can share knowledge with someone much more experienced than me. I think this extremely important for our industry: there’s a large population older than 55 who have mastered the oilfield technologies young people have yet to learn, and similarly a large tech-savvy population under the age of 35. This can be seen in global SPE membership from a 2016 SPE membership review:

Figure 1 SPE Professional Membership in 2006 and 2016. Source: (Parshall, 2017)

Figure 1 SPE Professional Membership in 2006 and 2016. Source:(Parshall, 2017)

                Both groups have an opportunity to be a student and teacher. The 55+ age group needs to pass down their knowledge to the younger people so that our institutional knowledge doesn’t disappear. The younger generation needs to keep the older generation up to date on advances in software and an ever-evolving tech space. Just like advocating for our industry, teaching and learning must be approached from a place of humility. Arrogance and pretentiousness only hinder the passing of knowledge. I know that I am guilty of assuming I know a specific topic, then I find out I know very little about it. My arrogance has definitely reduced my learning potential in many things, and I hope one day to remediate that.

                Based on the people I know; this will not be an issue. Some may retire later than anticipated, or come out of retirement to consult 10-20 hours per week. Given Dr. Roberto F. Aguilera’s outlook on oil prices over the next 20 years, I may find myself on the other end of this problem. By then I will hopefully have remembered lessons learned through our current predicament, remained a student and a teacher, and apply them to weather that storm.



June was a very fun month for SPE events. The golf tournament, which is older than me, celebrated its 36th birthday on June 3rd. If you’ve never played in it, I will personally attest that you do not need any sort of golf skill to have a good time. Make sure you thank the golf committee; they spend a lot of time putting on an amazing event every year.

On June 19th, our last Distinguished Lecturer of the season, Dr. Roberto F. Aguilera, came and gave a talk on the price performance of oil. Fascinating and eye-opening.

Also on June 19th, the YP group hosted a networking event at Bishop Cidercade. What’s more fun than cider and arcade games? There were close to 40 attendees.

Lastly, the annual Summer Seminar, “Learning Through Success and Failures: A Collection of Completion Case Histories” was held on June 26th. Please make sure to thank Pragnya, Tami, Danny and any other volunteers you came across. This is a big event for us and requires a lot of work.

If you ordered a shirt, please come to our meetings to pick up your shirt!

Please share photos! We are going to start posting more event photos on the website, so please email any you would like to share to dallas.spe.photos@gmail.com. Remember, they cannot be candid photographs (for privacy reasons).



Parshall, J. (2017, June 29). After Years, 'Big Crew Change' Has Passed, But Learning, Training Challenges Remain. Journal of Petroleum Technology, 69(7).



June, 2019
Section Members,

So far, 2019 has been another interesting year in the oil industry. We’ve seen oil prices climb over 40%, major acquisitions, and still, layoffs and early retirement packages. Many companies will come and go, especially in the Dallas market. Even with rising oil prices and general knowledge of how oil makes the world go ‘round, there are still those out there who see our industry as antiquated and soon to be obsolete.  

            We seem to be portrayed as selfish, greedy, money-grubbing fools who want nothing more than to earn a buck at the expense of the rest of the world. We are seen as the character from the Simpsons, Mr. Burns. My experience, much like many of yours, has been quite the opposite. Many of the people I work with genuinely care about my well-being. They are kind, pleasant, people who work diligently to provide for their families. Many people I know have been laid off, and their next employment opportunity seems to come from an acquaintance. We are all extremely fortunate to work in such a business, which is why I would encourage everyone to advocate for our industry. We have a lot to be proud of:

  • Oil was the original Greenpeace. Prior to petroleum production, whales were the primary source of lamp fuel. As the less foul-smelling oil from sperm whales became more expensive due to stressed fisheries, petroleum swiftly became a viable product. Sperm whales still exist today.
  • Oil has prevented entire forests from being completely harvested for fuel.
  • The oil industry has operated in some of the harshest environments known to man. From the cold, high-pressure depths of the ocean, to operating in SAGD environments, we have developed technology to handle almost any environment in the world. Some of these environments are harsher than space.
  • Taxes from production have funded schools, roads, and various public works. That revenue would not exist without our industry.
  • We still a people-driven industry. People willing to stick their necks out are the ones that continue to drive technological advancements, which allow us to work in a plethora of environments.
  • We provide safe, low-cost medical equipment to the world. Prior to plastics, vaccinations were given from reusable syringes. Plastics allow safe intubation, sterile blood transfer, and cool stickers for kids after their check-ups.

For all these reasons, I ask that when someone outside of the industry you know decides to bring up fracing, you approach them with an advocacy mindset. Be kind and calm, and remind them how they got to Hawaii for their honeymoon, what their iPhones are made of, and why Legos even exist. Never assume ill intent if it can be explained with ignorance.


Last Month

We had Luis Mendoza-Natividad discuss Decision Quality in Field Development Strategies in the general monthly meeting on May 15th.

The Study Group featured Kevin Wutherich, who spoke about stage-specific diverter strategies using lateral heterogeneity.

If you were one of the lucky ones, you pre-ordered your t-shirt. Thanks for everyone that supported that effort.

My second favorite SPE event, Casino Night, was held on May 3rd. I heard it was a lot of fun, as per usual.


Looking Forward:

My favorite SPE event, the Annual Golf Tournament, will be happening on the 3rd. I’m looking forward to seeing everyone out there.

Our last Distinguished Lecturer of the season will be speaking about the Exceptional Price Performance of Oil, make sure to register. For more information on the Distinguished Lecturer Program, click here.

The YPs will have a networking event at Bishop Cidercade, that will be graciously sponsored by Schlumberger.

There will not be a Study Group meeting this month. Instead, we will be holding our annual Summer Seminar. This year we’ll be learning about completion case histories through successes and failures.


Make sure to follow us on LinkedIn, where all our events (and more) are posted: https://www.linkedin.com/company/spe-dallas/.


Thanks to the early adopters of our advertising campaign, SPL and Axis Energy Services. For those that would still like to advertise, contact Joseph Fu: joseph.fu@pxd.com


If you have any ideas, comments, concerns or would like someone to talk to, feel free to contact me. My email is colin.beasley@denbury.com.


Colin Beasley


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