GSH: Alive and Strong
By: Dennis Yanchak, President  

In many ways, this has been a banner year for the Geophysical Society of Houston.  As the energy industry has continued its recovery, the GSH has continued to bring in new members, started a new Special Interest Group, and enjoyed a highly entertaining and informative Annual Spring Symposium.  Of course, we continued the 80+ other events that the GSH annually holds.  All of these centered on a strong Houston geophysical community.

The GSH year kicked off with wine at the Diversity and Women’s Networking Event at Sable Gate Winery where we learned how to “Build Your Professional Brand”.  There was an inspirational presentation and the opportunity to network with many leaders in the industry.  Later in September we switched to beer at the Icebreaker at St. Arnold’s Brewery.  Like the DWN, the event was well attended as those involved in the geophysical industry gathered to share a beer, snacks, and discussions on a variety of topics covering geophysical technology to business buzz.

In an effort to continue to raise the awareness of geophysics in unconventionals we kicked off a new Special Interest Group, the Unconventional SIG, in December with an interesting and enlightening presentation from Dave Hager, President and CEO of Devon Energy Corporation.  The event was sponsored by TGS at their office with nearly 100 attendees.  The second event in the series, held in February, featured Nancy House, President of the SEG 2017-2018, speaking on “The Unconventional Revolution in Exploration Geophysics”, again drawing a large and engaged audience.  

Rounding out the year on the technical side was the Annual Spring Symposium where we had the privilege to honor Dan Hampson and Brian Russell and take part in two days of discussions on “The Resurgence of Seismic Inversion”.  This one of kind event in the geophysical industry provided time to interact with the honorees technically and socially, hear presentations from industry leaders, challenge old and new ideas, and generally have a great time.  

These events are just a few of the many successful technical and social events that the GSH held this past year.  There is another side of the GSH that deserves recognition as well and that is GSH’s Outreach program spearheaded by Lisa Buckner.  That program promotes science and technology to the Greater Houston community’s youth and is an inspirational part of the GSH’s role in helping others.

There are a lot of things that I am thankful for this year.   GSH’s devoted staff, Karen Blakeman and Kathy Sanvido, are instrumental in keeping the organization the premier technical society in Houston.  They are devoted to the members of the GSH and go above and beyond their job duties.  As you know the GSH is a volunteer organization and at the top of that list are my fellow officers.  Without their tireless efforts and dedication we would never have been able to accomplish all that we have this year.  They are supported by many other volunteers that organize, coordinate and fundraise for the GSH’s social and technical events.  I am thankful for the speakers that have volunteered their time in preparing and presenting talks at those technical events and for everyone that has written and contributed to the GSH Journal.  I would be remiss if I didn’t thank our sponsors, corporate and individual, that keep all of our events and the organization alive and strong.

Finally, I want to thank you, our members, for this opportunity to serve this organization.  I attended as many events as I could this year, stepping outside of my geophysical comfort zone and learning a lot from that experience.  It was great to see so many of the geoscientists in Houston attending the GSH events.  Without your participation and support the GSH wouldn’t be the vibrant organization that it is today.  I look forward to an even better year next year and to seeing you at future GSH gatherings!