New Program Year Kicks Off


It’s that time again—time to develop plans for a new program year for the SPE Gulf Coast Section.

As we start the planning process, I like to begin with the end in mind. Our objective is to develop a program for the year which is consistent with our mission, while at the same time ensuring the financial health of the Gulf Coast Section. Our mission is laid out in the section by-laws; it is to ��

  • Provide forums that afford members the opportunity to upgrade and maintain professional competence
  • Provide social interaction that increases member participation in section activities as a whole, while striving to maintain the integrity of the section
  • Support programs in area primary and secondary schools to encourage students to develop their abilities in mathematics, science, and engineering
  • Support engineering programs at the university level
  • Enhance the image of the oil and gas industry by sponsoring community service programs.
With the help of each of our volunteer groups, we will do our best to devise a program that achieves the objective of advancing our mission.

This year’s planning process is based on good news. Our section is healthy and growing. The Gulf Coast area continues to be an attractive place to do business in the oil patch. As a Houston native, I have a natural interest in keeping it that way—the oil capital of the world. For those of you who don’t share my enthusiasm for Houston, but because you’re here anyway, let’s all make the most of our time here. Our SPE section can help make the Gulf Coast area a more rewarding professional experience for us all. The program we develop needs to focus on doing just that.

More good news is that our section’s financial status is much improved over previous years. This is largely because of strict cost cutting and strong guidelines on profitability that were imposed in the past. Now because of this success, we can relax our budget guidelines a bit and look for new and better ways to serve our members. Each of our study groups and committees has been asked to prepare a plan for the new year, along with a proposed budget with detailed planned revenues and needed expenses. The budget guidelines were e-mailed in June (if your group needs a copy, please let me know). The proposed budget plans were due to Treasurer Bill Bowers, Hanover Co., on June 16. (If you haven’t completed your budget yet, hey! Please help us out. Send yours to Bill as soon as possible.) Vice Treasurer Hiep Vu, Shell, is also available to help answer your budget questions.

The 2006–07 budgets as they currently stand are available for you to download from our Web site Board Minutes link

The board will have our budget review on August 3 at the Houston office to begin the process of reviewing and approving plans, and a follow-up review meeting is scheduled for August 25, just before our annual kick-off meeting. The regular monthly board meeting is August 17. All board meetings are open to the public, and all are invited to attend (reservations are required and can be be made by contacting the SPE Houston office at 713-779-9595). Once we have a look at all of the plans in total, we can give the go-ahead to our many volunteer groups to carry out their activities.

Our annual kick-off meeting will be held on August 25 in a conference room generously donated by Anadarko Petroleum Corp. in the Woodlands. This is a great chance to share best practices among our volunteers and to learn from each other. Please plan on joining us if at all possible. This is a great way to learn about the section’s activities for those who wish to get involved and to become a contributor.

Everyone on the board greatly appreciates the hard work and tremendous contributions of our many volunteers. We look forward to working with each of you during the coming months to ensure yet another successful year for the SPE Gulf Coast Section.

If you would like to become active and contribute to the section’s activities, please let me know. We welcome greater participation by everyone.