Last year, the GCS’ 14 study groups again held a great lineup of topical luncheons, dinners, and technical workshops. More than 6,000 people attended the 84 events during the program year—the work of the study groups is critical to our mission to disseminate technology. The Study Groups and committees also held seven large conferences and symposia, some with exhibitions, drawing more than 1,500 attendees. Our Continuing Education Courses were as popular as ever, with 540 people attending eight short courses and seminars. The Young Professionals group held 25 social and technical events with 575 participants.
But, it was not all work and no play. We held three large social events—the tennis tournament, golf tournament, and sporting clays tournament. These three events attracted 1,800 participants, plus
hundreds of volunteers and sponsors. Our Tennis Tournament is now in its 25th year, the Sporting Clays is in its 9th year, and the Golf Tournament in its 36th year. With nearly 1,000 golfers, our Golf Tournament is the second-largest single-day golf event in the United States. The volunteers put on first-class events, as evidenced by the yearly sell-outs and tremendous donations to the scholarship program-more than $100,000 last year alone!
Other highlights include multiple community outreach programs, a successful executive breakfast meeting, expanded education initiatives, expanded Podcasts, Awards Banquet, spotless independent accounting review, and continued growth of financial assets.

Knowledge Transfer

The theme for this program year is Knowledge Transfer. We plan to use our technical meetings to serve our diverse membership needs and bridge the experience gap between the aging workforce and
large group of incoming oil and gas professionals. The average age of SPE members is starting to drop-from 47 last year down to 46 this year-thanks to the influx of young graduates during the past
few years. SPE does not limit membership to engineers; our society is roughly split among petroleum engineers, nonpetroleum engineers, and nonengineers. But, we all have a common thread-a passion for oil and gas.
The board of directors will continue to develop a knowledge dissemination framework to encourage new programs and use technology to reach a broader audience. To that end, we will continue with our successful video Podcasts, and expand and diversify the topics delivered. Additional goals are to expand our education initiatives, recruit new volunteers for the committees, and maintain our spotless accounting record while “re-investing” in opportunities to benefit the membership.
Our budget for 2008–09 is $2.03 million in revenue with $2.28 million in expenses; the decrease in net income of $250,000 represents increased spending on programs for the membership, community outreach programs, and more scholarships. The GCS has a  comfortable, stable reserve built up over the past five years to fund continuing operations.

Board of Directors

The SPE Gulf Coast Section board of directors consists of 19 members. The five officers and six at-large directors are elected positions, and a slate of qualified candidates is put forth by the board Nominating Committee in February of each year. Any SPE member living in the Gulf Coast Section area may vie for an open board position. The Section by-laws, available at, outlines the process and deadlines. The board includes seven additional positions, which are appointed by board committees, and the past chairman from the previous program year. This year’s GCS board has a diverse representation of our industry: ten work for E&P companies, five for service or supply companies, three for engineering firms, one is a consultant, and one works for a capital provider. Their backgrounds and professional interests vary as well, providing a broad range of
perspectives and experience to benefit the Gulf Coast Section.

SPE Demographics

Total Members 79,292
Professional members 60,616
Student members 18,676
Average age in 2007 46
Average age in 2006 47
New members added in 2007 7,800
Professional membership location
North America 55%
Outside North America 45%

SPE GCS Demographics

Gulf Coast Section members 14,171
Members who have held an SPE officer position 3,035

Top 5 Technical Disciplines
Drilling and Completion 4,038
Reservoir Description 3,208
Production & Operations 2,935
Management & Information 2,329
Projects, Facilities & Construction 1,041
Top 5 Business Classifications
Service/Manufacturing 4,761
Major Integrated Oil Company 3,543
Independent Oil & Gas 2,372
Consultant 1,884
Other 701

SPE Membership

You do not have to be an engineer to belong to the Society of Petroleum Engineers. You must be
actively employed in work related to the petroleum industry AND have one of the following:
  • A university degree equivalent to a 4-year Bachelors degree in engineering or basic or applied sciences 
  • A 2-year science or engineering degree or a 4-year degree in a field other than science or engineering 
  • 6 years of active practice in support of petroleum engineering or in the application of science to the petroleum industry.