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DPA Goal: Bring Value to Members

American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG)

The Division of Professional Affairs has in recent years accomplished a number of tasks to benefit its members. These include:

  • The Legislative Tracking service, available online to DPA members, that tracks state and federal legislative activity concerning, well, everything – but in particular the DPA filters it for legislation related to geology and petroleum.
  • DPA support of the GEO-DC office, with its director, David Curtiss.
  • The DPA Web site has a member directory where potential clients and employers can seek certified members who are available for consulting.
  • The “Members Only” portion of the Web site has a Professional Development Hour database where members can keep up with their continuing education requirements if they also are state licensed, or are a DPA Board Certified Member.
  • Online continuing education courses are available, free to DPA members and for a small fee to others.

And there are other features available for members. I would encourage everyone to take a look.

I’d like to thank all the past DPA officers and councilors for their efforts in implementing these goals.


Last year, the idea of holding Town Hall meetings was implemented. These meetings are to bring DPA functions to the local membership, to explain what is going on within the division and to present the DPA to potential new members.

The first DPA Town Hall meeting, organized by past-DPA president and current DPA Membership Chair Mike Party, was held at the Midland Petroleum Club on March 30. Drinks and hors d’oeuvres were served while attendees enjoyed mingling with friends and acquaintances, and GEO-DC’s David Curtiss gave his presentation, “The Shifting Sands of U.S. Energy Policy.”

The event was well attended by 78 people – 70 of whom were AAPG members, 19 DPA members and 15 who either had applied for or would like to apply for DPA membership.

Curtiss gave a great presentation that was well received, and he fielded many questions regarding activities in Washington. Those in attendance had positive comments regarding his talk and the GEO-DC office and had many questions to which David responded.

One way to increase membership in the DPA is to highlight GEO-DC office activities – and David did a great job. Energy legislation and taxation are issues that geoscientists are concerned about, because they have a direct effect on our business activities.

Town Hall meetings are being planned for the Mid-Continent Section meeting in Tulsa, and meetings are being considered this year in Denver, Houston and Dallas.

Contact your Councilor if you would like to help plan a meeting, or would like to see a Town Hall meeting held in your area.


Since July 1, 2008, we have added 19 new Certified Petroleum Geologists; two new Certified Coal Geologists; and two new Certified Petroleum Geophysicists, for a total of 23 new DPA members last fiscal year.


Our new leadership is in place: newly elected are President-elect Dan Tearpock, Vice President Michael Canich and Secretary Paul Pause. Existing board members are President Paul Britt, Treasurer Micheal Fogarty and Past-President Rick Ericksen.

New councilors are Dan Billman, Eastern Section; Bob Countryman, Pacific Section; David Abbott and Jeff Brame, Rocky Mountain Section. Present councilors are John Dewey and Mark Gallagher, Mid-Continent Section; Mike Party, Southwest Section; Tim Allen, International Regions; and Maurice Birdwell, Al Baker, David Chestain, Stewart Chuber, David Hart and Rick Nagy, Gulf Coast Section.

The DPA Council will be very active this year maintaining the existing programs and implementing new ones. The primary goal is to bring value to the division membership – and your feedback as members is essential to that success.

I encourage all DPA members to contact their councilor(s) with any comments, ideas or questions regarding the DPA.

We look forward to hearing from you.

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The Division of Professional Affairs (DPA), a division of AAPG, seeks to promote professionalism and ethical standards, provide a means for professional certification of petroleum geologists, coal geologists, and petroleum geophysicists, assist in career planning, and improve the professional well-being of AAPG members. For more information about the DPA and its activities, visit the DPA website.

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