Board of Directors
Jerry R. Schuyler, currently Board Chairman, became a member of the Board effective August 8, 2014. Mr. Schuyler is currently an independent director for private equity funded Gulf Coast Energy Resources Company, a position he has held since 2010, and also serves as a member of the audit committee. Mr. Schuyler is also currently an independent director for publicly traded Rosetta Resources (“Rosetta”), a position he has held since December 2013. On the Rosetta board, he serves as a member of the compensation committee and the governance committee. Mr. Schuyler previously served as a director for Laredo Petroleum, Inc. (“Laredo”) for six years. He joined Laredo in June 2007 as Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer. In July 2008, he was promoted to President and Chief Operating Officer. He served in that capacity and as a director of the Laredo board of directors until July of 2013 when he announced his retirement. During Mr. Schuyler’s tenure, he was instrumental in helping grow Laredo from a private equity financed start-up company into a publicly traded company listed on the NYSE. Mr. Schuyler has a Bachelor of Science degree in Petroleum Engineering from Montana College of Mineral Science and Technology and attended several graduate business courses in the executive program at the Bauer College of Business at the University of Houston. Mr. Schuyler was chosen to serve on the Board because of his substantial knowledge of the energy industry and his business, leadership and management expertise.
J. Russell Porter has been a member of the Board and has served as our President and Chief Executive Officer since February 2004. From August 2006 until January 2010, he also served as Chairman of the Board. From September 2000 to February 2004, he served as our Chief Operating Officer. Mr. Porter has an energy focused background, with approximately 22 years of natural gas and oil exploration and production experience and five years of banking and investment experience specializing in the energy sector. From April 1994 to September 2000, Mr. Porter served as an Executive Vice President of Forcenergy, Inc., a publicly-traded exploration and production company, where he was responsible for the acquisition and financing of the majority of its assets across the United States and Australia. He currently is a director of Caza Oil & Gas, Inc., a publicly-traded exploration and development company listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange and the London AIM exchange and Petrel Energy Ltd., an Australian listed exploration and development company with assets in Uruguay, Spain and Canada. He has held no other directorship positions in publicly-traded companies during the last five years. Mr. Porter holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Petroleum Land Management from Louisiana State University and a MBA from the Kenan-Flagler School of Business at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Mr. Porter was chosen as a director because he is our Chief Executive Officer and has proven management skills. He has extensive knowledge of the natural gas and oil industry and experience in managing natural gas and oil assets as well as relationships with chief executives and other senior management of natural gas and oil companies and oilfield service companies throughout the United States. Mr. Porter actively participates in all facets of our business and has a significant influence on both its business strategy and daily operations. Mr. Porter resides in Houston, Texas, USA.
John H. Cassels was elected to the Board effective March 8, 2011. Mr. Cassels is a Chartered Accountant with 37 years of direct experience in the Canadian oil and natural gas industry, having been a senior officer and director of ten junior oil and natural gas companies. On July 1, 2011, he was appointed to the position of Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Secretary of Cascade Resources Inc., a private junior oil and gas exploration company based in Calgary, Alberta. On December 15, 2011, Cascade Resources Inc. was amalgamated with Northern Spirit Resources Inc., a publicly traded oil and natural gas company listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange. Prior to that appointment, he served as a partner and Chief Financial Officer of Purdy Partners Inc., a private equity/merchant bank in Calgary, Alberta, a position he held from December 2009 to July 2011. From September 2008 until November 2009, Mr. Cassels was a financial consultant to a Canadian oil and gas exploration company operating in both Argentina and Canada. From 2007 through September 2008, he served as a Director of World Cup Operations/Alpine Canada, which organized Alpine test events for the 2010 Olympic Winter Games in Vancouver. From 2003 through 2007, he was a founding shareholder, Chief Executive Officer and director of Highview Resources, a publicly-traded company that built a significant inventory of oil and natural gas prospects in Alberta and Saskatchewan. Mr. Cassels holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Bishop’s University in Sherbrooke, Québec. Mr. Cassels resides in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. Mr. Cassels was chosen as a director because of his valuable financial expertise and extensive knowledge of the oil and gas industry. His business and management expertise from his position as an executive officer and director of many companies also provides the Board with important perspectives on key corporate governance matters.
Randolph C. Coley was appointed to the Board in January 2010. Mr. Coley is currently retired and has been since the end of 2008. From 1999 until his retirement at the end of 2008, Mr. Coley was a partner in the Houston, Texas office of the law firm of King & Spalding LLP, where his practice was concentrated in the areas of corporate and securities law. Previously, he served as Executive Managing Director and Head of Investment Banking for Morgan Keegan & Company, Inc. and was a partner in King & Spalding LLP’s Atlanta office. He is a director of Deltic Timber Corporation, a publicly-traded natural resources company engaged primarily in the growing and harvesting of timber and the manufacture and marketing of lumber, a position he has held since 2007. Additionally, he is a member of the audit and the nominating and corporate governance committees of that organization. He is also a director of Trade Street Residential, Inc. (“Trade Street”), a real estate investment trust that develops and owns residential apartments. Mr. Coley is a member of the audit committee and chairs the nominating and corporate governance committee of Trade Street. He has held no other directorship positions in publicly-traded companies during the last five years. Mr. Coley earned his undergraduate degree from Vanderbilt University and graduated with a law degree from Vanderbilt School of Law. Mr. Coley resides in Atlanta, Georgia, USA. Mr. Coley was chosen as a director because of his extensive business and legal background and his keen understanding of various corporate governance matters that he has attained through his representation of and service on other public company boards.
Robert D. Penner became a member of the Board effective July 2007. Mr. Penner currently is and has been an independent consultant since 2004, when he retired from his position as a senior partner with KPMG, after a career of advising public and private clients on tax and accounting matters for almost 41 years. He currently serves on the board of directors for Equana Technologies Inc. (formerly Sustainable Energy Technologies Ltd.), a manufacturer and seller of electronic components for grid-connected solar power systems as well as Corridor Resources Ltd., and Terra Energy Corp., each involved in the exploration, development and production of natural gas and oil. On April 20, 2010, Mr. Penner resigned from the board of directors of Altima Resources Ltd. (the successor company to Unbridled Energy Corporation). Mr. Penner served as a director of Storm Cat Energy Corporation (“Storm Cat”), a position he held from January 2005 through September 2011. In November 2008, the U.S. subsidiaries of Storm Cat filed a voluntary petition for reorganization under Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code, and Storm Cat was subsequently delisted from the Toronto Stock Exchange and the NYSE Amex LLC, which delisting remain in effect as of the date hereof. He additionally serves on the board of directors or as executor/trustee for several private companies and family trusts. Mr. Penner received his Chartered Accountant designation in 1971 in Manitoba and 1977 in Alberta. He has held no other directorship positions in publicly-traded companies during the last five years. Mr. Penner is currently the audit committee chairman for each of the public companies of which he is a director and serves on the compensation and governance committees of Terra Energy Corp. and Corridor Resources Inc. Mr. Penner resides in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. Mr. Penner was chosen as a director because of his keen understanding of finance, accounting and various corporate governance matters that he has attained through his career with KPMG and service on other public company boards.
Dr. Stephen A. Holditch became a member of the Board effective August 8, 2014. Dr. Holditch is a Professor Emeritus in the Harold Vance Department of Petroleum Engineering at Texas A&M University, having retired from the University on January 31, 2013. He was the Director of the Texas A&M University Energy Institute from 2011 to 2012. From January 2004 to January 2012, he was head of the Harold Vance Department of Petroleum Engineering at Texas A&M University. In 1995, Dr. Holditch was elected to the National Academy of Engineering, the highest professional honor awarded to an engineer for his innovative work in developing low permeability gas reservoirs. From 1977 to 1997, Holditch was the President of S. A. Holditch & Associates, Inc., a company specializing in evaluations, completions and stimulation of tight gas reservoirs, to include sandstones, coal seams and shales. Schlumberger purchased his company in 1997 and Holditch worked for Schlumberger as a advisor to top level management until 2004. Dr. Holditch was previously on the board of directors at Matador Petroleum Corporation and is an original shareholder in Matador Resources Company. He was first elected to the board of directors of Matador Resources Company in January 2004 and served as chair of the Operations and Engineering Committee until rotating off the board in 2014. Additionally, from February 2006 to December 2011, Dr. Holditch was on the board of directors of Triangle Petroleum Corporation, an oil and natural gas exploration company. While there, he helped to formulate the strategy and oversee the company’s growth before resigning in 2011 to devote more time to Texas A&M University. Dr. Holditch received his B.S., M.S. and Ph.D. in Petroleum Engineering from Texas A&M University in 1969, 1970 and 1976, respectively. Dr. Holditch was chosen as a director because of his extensive experience in the energy industry and substantial knowledge of petroleum engineering matters.