This month marks an important milestone for the South Texas Energy & Economic Roundtable (STEER). In October, we will celebrate our five-year anniversary. So much has changed since the inception of STEER. We have seen prices and rig counts fluctuate. The state of the oil and gas industry in South Texas is vastly different from 2012, when we first got started. I don’t think anyone could have imagined the ups and downs that have taken place since exploration and production of the Eagle Ford Shale first began.
I commend our founding members for their foresight to create an organization focused on grassroots efforts in South Texas and collaborate with those working and living in and around the Eagle Ford Shale region. The success of STEER as an organization, and the oil and gas industry in South Texas, is the direct result of those collaborations. We have enjoyed our growing relationships with countless elected officials, community leaders, nonprofit organizations, various community organizations, hospitals, school districts and higher education institutions, regulatory agencies and so many others. It has been a pleasure to work with each of you over the years.
As the state of the oil and gas industry in South Texas changed over the last five years, STEER evolved alongside with emerging industry and community needs. Our relationships with the communities of South Texas helped us to learn the specific needs for each region. We have been able to evaluate the economic impact of the industry over the last five years. Also, as the industry grew, so did the needs of our companies, resulting in new committees including the Operations and Millennial committees, along with new staff members.
STEER has been committed to showcasing companies in South Texas for the past four years at our Eagle Ford Excellence Awards. We have awarded numerous companies and organizations with the distinguished award. Our dedication to the upcoming fifth annual Eagle Ford Excellence Awards remains. No matter the state of the industry, we feel it is important to recognize those who make safety a priority, protect the environment and give back to our South Texas communities.
I want to thank STEER’s current board of directors for their continuous support of our mission. STEER board members include BHP Billiton, Chesapeake, ConocoPhillips, Devon Energy, Encana, EnerVest, EOG Resources, Marathon Oil Corporation, Murphy Oil Corporation, Pioneer Natural Resources, Statoil, SM Energy, Noble Energy, Cheyenne Petroleum, EP Energy, Sanchez Energy Corporation and XTO Energy.
I would also like to thank STEER’s entire membership for their dedication to the success of the organization. Our Supporting, Resource and Associate Members are an integral part of this organization, and we would not have the capacity to execute the goals of each of our committees without them.
As the first five years have come to an end, I want to reiterate STEER’s goals. We are here to work with the communities of South Texas. We are here to connect the industry to the communities in which we live and work.
You will continue to see STEER in South Texas and beyond. I look forward to continuing the strong working relationships that we have developed with those in the Eagle Ford Shale region. I am proud to be a native South Texan and proud to be President and CEO of this amazing organization.
About the author: Omar Garcia is the President and CEO of the South Texas Energy and Economic Roundtable, STEER. STEER connects the oil and gas industry to South Texas communities, facilitating and coordinating communication, education and public advocacy surrounding the production of energy resources in South Texas.