Having been asked by your Recorder editor to submit a column for this month's issue the first and most important question that pops into my mind is..."What the heck will I write about?" Don't misunderstand my situation here; I am quite capable of expounding on just about any topic at any time required ( anyone who has worked with me in the past can confirm this). My hesitation arises from the uncertainty regarding what the readership might want to hear from me. I realize that as an elected official of the society, the only information you might have about me is the brief biographical material that was circulated with the election ballot supplemented by any innuendo or rumors circulated by those conspiring to get me elected. Being 1st vice president, you are further stuck with me for the next 2 years beyond this term. Just who is this guy and what has he been doing since you carefully evaluated him and marked an X by his name on the ballot?
Well, I've been a practicing geophysicist (APEGGA registered even) for 18 years working for major, intermediate and junior O&G companies. Most of that time has been spent in interpretation, though I have made brief sojourns into field operations and R&D at various times through my career. While never really aspiring to the role of management and while having successfully avoided such duties for 16 years, I now find that part of my current role is to "supervise" some very capable people while continuing to interpret my own data projects. How did I get involved with the CSEG to the extent I am today? I presented a paper at the 1991 convention, which caught the attention of the 2nd Vice President (affectionately referred to as the VP in charge of lunch). I was asked to present the paper at a CSEG luncheon. As I was loading the slides into the tray before the meeting Brian Russell asked me to run for 2nd VP. I agreed to run if Brian promised I wouldn't win. He lied and I became the 1992 2nd VP in charge of lunch (please note that it is the duty of the 2nd VP to arrange the speakers for the luncheon meetings). Having successfully avoided notice by the society executive for the next 5 years I again made the tactical error of presenting a luncheon paper and was again cornered by a member of the executive (Rob Stewart) and asked to let my name stand for election. Since I had last choice I got to run for 1st VP and once more, not being able to rig the election to ensure my defeat, I was duly elected by you, the membership. (For the record, I voted for the other guy!)
Not wanting to sound too frivolous about the job, your 1998 executive is a great group of people to work with. They are fun and funny and a lot of work is done by them behind the scenes that makes the society tick along like a reliable old watch. Aside from the monthly luncheon meetings we all attend, much of the work of your executive is involved in committee work and executive meetings. Your society is in tremendous financial shape which is allowing us to support various new initiatives such as the upcoming CSEG/CAGC Technical Forum this November. We are looking into bringing several more public courses following the success of Ian Jack's 40 seismic seminar that was held this past spring. Currently I am trying to establish a continuing education committee that can oversee the running of 4 or 5 such courses each year. (If you have interest in serving on such a committee please contact me).
So what have I learned in the past few months in the executive? First, the society is, for the most part, a well oiled machine that may require some tinkering here and there, but is far away from any need for any major retooling. Secondly, without the dedication of the office staff of Heather and Susan, we would be lost. If anyone knows what needs doing and who to talk to, it is Heather Payne. Give her a call at the office and say thanks. Third, if you are presenting a paper at a luncheon in the autumn be prepared to be asked to run for election. I know now from experience that, while reluctant to serve, I have enjoyed it very much, to the point of repeating my "error" and running for a second office. Please consider letting your name stand when the call comes. You just might enjoy the job too!