October 25, 2017 at 9:23 am

Todd Stephenson Named to Geological Science Alumni Advisory Board

Todd Stephenson

Todd Stephenson

Ohio University alum Todd Stephenson’s 36-year career has been full of highlights—and it all started with a love for southwest Ohio and a bachelor’s degree in geology.

“Growing up as a child in southwest Ohio, I collected fossils because they were everywhere,” Stephenson says. “I didn’t realize until later in life that I lived near some of the best Upper Ordovician geologic outcrops and some of the best glacial geology features found anywhere in the world. Geology was in my DNA!”

Stephenson was the first recipient of the Dr. Myron T. Sturgeon Undergraduate Geology Research Scholarship (1974-1977), and he received the Top Undergraduate Student Award in Geology for both classroom and field camp research in 1977.

He was recently named to the Ohio University Department of Geological Science’s Alumni Advisory Board.

Stephenson married his Ohio University sweetheart, Becky, and they have been together for 37 years. They have two children, Joel (Southern Methodist University grad ’01) and Heather (Ohio University grad ’04).

After earning his bachelor’s degree in geology in 1977 from the College of Arts & Sciences at OHIO, Stephenson accepted a teaching assistantship at the University of Cincinnati and graduated in 1979 with a Master of Science in Geology. He completed a U.S. Department of Energy-sponsored graduate thesis research project in east-central Kentucky. His project focused on the identification of Upper Devonian shale gas formations and their relationship to underlying carbonate strata.

Starting His Career with Amoco

After finishing his studies, Stephenson began his career in 1979 at Amoco Production Co. in Houston, where he worked as a petroleum geologist. He was involved in both national and international projects.

Stephenson’s assignments with Amoco ranged from detailed reservoir studies of individual producing fields (Permian Basin, Gulf Coast and Mid-Continent) to regional basin analysis of ranking all of the basins in offshore West Africa. In 1995, he took on a functional leadership role as the Amoco Geoscience Technology Team Leader and led geoscience projects in Norway, New Zealand, the Gulf of Mexico, Trinidad and Argentina. He was a member of Amoco’s exploration quality control team with responsibility for technical risk assessment of the company’s worldwide exploration portfolio. His work in organizational design for Amoco E&P Technology area resulted in an Amoco Corp. Chairman’s Award for Management Excellence in 1997.

Chief Geologist for BP

In 1999, associated with the BP-Amoco merger and later in 2002 with the ARCO merger, Stephenson became the Upstream Technology Group Geoscience Manager for technical specialists in London, Aberdeen, Tulsa, Plano, and Houston. The group focused on the integration of technologies, processes, databases and most importantly, company culture. In 2005, Stephenson became BP’s Chief Geologist for the North America Gas Business Unit (onshore United States and Canada) with responsibility for discipline health, subsurface technical assurance, technology planning, and exploration portfolio assessment for renewal opportunities. He elected to take early retirement from BP in 2010.

Chesapeake Energy Vice President—Geoscience Technology

Stephenson joined Chesapeake Energy in Oklahoma City in September of 2010, and until 2013 he held a functional geoscience leadership role a member of the multi-discipline Mid-Continent Leadership team with joint responsibility for a $1.3 billion operational budget. In 2013, he became Chesapeake’s Vice President—Geoscience Technology with primary responsibility for the research and development, technical service, and organizational capability of the geoscience functions at Chesapeake Energy. This also included responsibility for managing the company’s on-campus Reservoir Technology Center.

In 2014, he was one of a select seven member, multi-discipline, Chesapeake Energy Management Team charged with the redesign of the entire corporation. This six-month project resulted in a more streamlined business unit design and saved the company hundreds of millions of dollars. In addition, he was a member of the Board of Directors of Wireless Seismic Inc., a global geophysical equipment company headquartered in Houston from 2013-15. He elected to retire from Chesapeake Energy in November of 2015.

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