The management team at Tanos II have over 120 years of combined experience exploring and exploiting natural resources in the East Texas and North Louisiana Basins. A brief synopsis of their experience is detailed in the biographies below.
Mark A. Brandon has served as President and Chief Executive Officer since the formation of Tanos Exploration II, LLC in 2013. Mr. Brandon was President and co-founder of Tanos Exploration, LLC, a private equity backed oil and natural gas exploration company specializing in horizontal drilling with operations in the Ark-La-Tex area with Nick Pollard and John Holley in 2007.
Tanos Exploration, LLC was sold in 2013 to Memorial Resource Development, LLC. Prior to forming Tanos, Mark was founder and President of Gas-Chill, Inc. Gas-Chill specialized in the manufacturing and leasing of natural gas refrigeration systems utilizing patented technology (U.S. Patent No. 7,716,947). Gas-Chill was founded in 2004 and sold to Kinder-Morgan Treating, LP in 2010. Mark was the co-founder and President of Brandon-Kidd Drilling Corporation from 2004 to 2009 and that company was sold in 2009.
From 2000 until the formation of Tanos in 2007, he was owner and President of Brandon Energy, Inc., an independent oil and gas exploration and production company with operations primarily in East Texas. Mark was employed by Sonat Exploration Company for 6 years as a geological engineer and was promoted to Exploitation Manager for the Tyler Division in 1998 and served in that capacity until the division closure in 2000.
Prior to Sonat Mark was employed by numerous independent oil and gas operators including Burk Royalty Company, Sikes Operating Company and James E. Smith and Associates.
Mark holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Geology from Stephen F. Austin University and Master of Science degree in Geology from Centenary College of Louisiana and has more than 30 years of experience in the oil and natural gas industry.
Nick Pollard has been a geologist in the oil and gas industry since 1985, working on horizontal projects starting in 1988. Company experience has ranged from small family-owned companies, mid-sized public upstream companies and culminating with private equity backed companies since 2007.
Pollard’s broad experience and background in the Ark-La-Tex region is the result of working the area almost exclusively throughout his career. Over this time many relationships have been forged that make business development a natural fit. Acquisitions, divestitures, joint ventures, farm outs and drill-to-earn projects have all been utilized to amass the current Tanos assets.
In 2007, Nick was a co-founder of Tanos Energy, LLC (Tanos I) with a $40 MM commitment from Natural Gas Partner (NGP). At the time, Tanos was the first portfolio company NGP had funded employing a horizontal business model - exploit tight gas reservoirs utilizing horizontal drilling technology combined with multi-stage fracture stimulation. Over the five year span of Tanos I, a total of $130 MM of equity and $30 MM of bank debt was deployed.
Tanos Energy II was formed in 2013 with a $200 MM and Tanos Energy III in 2016 with a $300 MM commitment from Quantum Energy Partners. Tanos Exploration II, LLC is the operating company for both.
Nick graduated from the University of Texas at Austin in 1984 with a B.S. degree in geology and received his M.S. degree in geology from the University of Houston in 1990. He has served in all officer positions for the East Texas Geological Society (ETGS) and has chaired the annual ETGS golf tournament for over 20 years. Currently Board President of the Petroleum Data Library in Tyler and board member of the Ark-La-Tex Oilmen’s Golf Association.
Mr. Becker is a petroleum geologist with over 30 years of exploration and field development experience. He started his career with Exxon in Midland developing play concepts in the Permian Basin, as well as other Rockies and Mid-continent basins. At Exxon, John gained experience integrating geology, geochemisty and seismic with the new concept of horizontal drilling. Transferred to Houston, he began working the Gulf Coast and offshore utilizing 2-D and 3-D seismic, well control, paleontology and reservoir engineering data.
Becker left Exxon and Houston in 1996 to work for Sonat Exploration in Tyler. Horizontal drilling was again a focus, as Sonat was heavily involved in the Austin chalk play in Texas and Louisiana. Later, John began generating prospect ideas that utilized Sonat’s large database of 3-D surveys. When Sonat sold to El Paso and shuttered the Tyler office, he opted to stay in Tyler and work for EOG Resources as Sr. Geologist. Over seven years, John generated play concepts and prospects that culminated in numerous discoveries and served as team leader in the effort to identify unconventional plays that led to EOG’s discovery and acreage position in the Haynesville shale play. The last 10 years at EOG John served as Division Exploration Manager that saw the Tyler Division transition from conventional reservoirs to unconventional resource play opportunities. When EOG decided to close the Tyler Division office in 2016, John opted again to stay in Tyler instead of accepting a transfer to Fort Worth. He officially joined the Tanos companies in November 2017 to lead the exploration team. During his limited time at Tanos, John has already added value with new exploration concepts and ideas across the Tanos portfolio of properties.
Brian Durman has been employed in the oil and gas industry since 1987 where he began his career with Shell Western Exploration & Production Company in Houston, Texas. During his tenure at Shell, he worked numerous geographical areas in North America, including the Rocky Mountains where he was involved in the early assembly of leasehold in the North Dakota Bakken shale play.
He was later assigned to work areas in Shell’s active South Louisiana exploration program. Subsequent to Shell, Brian was employed with Citation Oil & Gas Corp. in Houston. While there, he was the land representative for all of Citation’s acquisition and exploitation land related activities in South and West Texas, New Mexico and Oklahoma. In 1997, he accepted a position with EOG Resources, Inc. in its Tyler, Texas, division. During his 16 years with EOG, he was designated as the Gulf Coast Team Leader and Division Land Advisor for EOG’s exploration activities in Arkansas, East Texas, Louisiana, and Mississippi. He was instrumental in negotiating and consummating numerous multi-million dollar joint ventures in the Tuscaloosa Marine Shale in North Louisiana and Eaglebine and Eagleford in East Texas, among others. Brian joined the Tanos team in August of 2013.
A graduate of the University of Louisiana-Lafayette with a bachelors in Petroleum Land Management and minor in Geology, Brian has been an active member with the American Association of Petroleum Landmen, Houston Association of Petroleum Landmen (HAPL), West HAPL, Professional Landmen's Association of New Orleans, Mississippi Association of Petroleum Landmen, Lafayette Association of Petroleum Landmen and East Texas Association of Petroleum Landmen where he has chaired numerous committees and held the office of Vice President.
Lisa Norwood is a seasoned, entrepreneurial energy professional with a 25-year career in energy and a background that includes marketing of natural gas, crude oil and natural gas liquids. She brings strong marketing leadership to the Tanos team, which she joined in January 2016, soon after the formation of Tanos III.
Mrs. Norwood’s experience includes working in the upstream, midstream and electric power sectors of the energy business. She has been responsible for gathering, processing, commodity marketing & logistics, hedging, contract negotiations, asset management, and business development. Her energy career began at Transcontinental Gas Pipeline, where she performed market analysis, then at Sonat Marketing Company she engaged in market Origination before joining Calpine Corporation as Director of Fuel Management, handling gas supply and logistics for power plants. She was then successful in starting and managing her own energy marketing consulting business, Norwood Ventures, Inc. which provided marketing services to small midstream and producing companies.
Lisa is a graduate of the University of Houston and has both a Bachelor and Master of Business Administration degree. She is an active volunteer for the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo, which is a charitable organization, raising millions of dollar per year in educational commitments to the youth of Texas. She is active in the Natural Gas Society of East Texas, past president of the Natural Gas & Energy Association of Oklahoma & International Association for Energy Economics Houston Chapter, a member of the Texas Alliance of Energy Producers and is a participant in the Houston Producer Forum.
Paul Teske recently joined Tanos as Chief Operating Officer. Mr. Teske has spent his career in the energy industry acquiring and developing oil and gas assets. Mr. Teske has held several senior management positions in the oil and gas industry. Prior to joining Tanos, Mr. Teske was COO and founder Newark E&P, LLC, a private equity backed oil and gas company based in Fort Worth. Prior to Newark, Mr. Teske worked with DTE Gas Resources where he served as President. Mr. Teske has a well-established track record of acquiring, developing and monetizing large scale oil and gas projects. He has extensive transactional experience including over $2 billion in acquisitions and divestitures spanning many of the active domestic basins. Mr. Teske has a BS in Engineering from Michigan State University.