MSC, Gov. Ridge Mark Veteran’s Day

Shale Gas Industry Continues to Put America’s Vets to Work

Canonsburg, PA - With more than 1 million veterans in Pennsylvania, the Commonwealth, our families, and communities across the region understand full-well the sacrifice that our brave servicemembers make to preserve America’s freedoms. Through the responsible development of the Marcellus Shale’s clean-burning energy resources, the natural gas industry is helping to put local veterans to work, a commitment underscored in the Marcellus Shale Coalition’s (MSC) Guiding Principles.

“Today, we thank our veterans for their service and for keeping our homeland safe. Transitioning from the battlefield to civilian life can be challenging, especially during one of the deepest economic downturns in our nation’s history. Thankfully, as Marcellus development expands, job opportunities for our nation’s heroes do as well,” said Kathryn Klaber, president and executive director of the MSC, whose father served in the U.S. Navy. “Consistent with our Guiding Principles, our industry continues to ‘attract and retain a talented and engaged local workforce.’ Our region’s veterans represent some of America’s most dedicated and hard-working individuals, and it’s a privilege and an honor to have so many of them working throughout our industry.”

“We take pause today to thank our service members and their families. As a nation, we are indebted for their sacrifices and service. It is our solemn duty to never forget the courageous, honorable and selfless acts of America’s veterans and troops. Because of so many brave servicemen and women, America’s freedoms remain the envy of the world,” said Gov. Tom Ridge, an MSC strategic advisor who served as an infantry staff sergeant in Vietnam, where he earned the Bronze Star for Valor.

The following is a compilation of remarks from veterans working in the Marcellus Shale industry:

  • “As a Veteran, native to Pennsylvania and Penn College Graduate, Anadarko Petroleum has given me the opportunity to work locally and maintain a strong sense of community and environmental stewardship.” — Mark Barbier, Environmental Representative, Anadarko Petroleum Corporation; U.S. Navy
  • “I definitely believe that I’m still serving my country by working for Chesapeake and by working in the natural gas industry. We are helping to provide a clean, abundant energy source that is right here in our back yard – an alternative to foreign oil, and I’m proud to be a part of that. I feel like I am part of something big and something that is very important for our country’s future – so in my mind my service definitely didn’t end when I left the Army.” — Adam Beck, Field Engineer, Chesapeake Midstream Development, L.P.; U.S. Army
  • “I am extremely proud to have served my country and to work for Atlas Energy. My military experience has served me well as it relates to the oil and gas industry in leading a team of dedicated men and women in one common goal.” — Michael W. Beckett, Director of Land, Atlas Energy; U.S. Army, 101st Airborne Division
  • “I really enjoy working with Range. The military teaches its members about teamwork, selfless dedication and every facet of the organization working toward the same goal. Our industry is no different. Plus, we have the added benefit of creating jobs in our communities. That makes me feel great about waking up every morning and being a part of what we do.” — Jim Cannon, Public Affairs Specialist, Range Resources; U.S. Marine Corps and U.S. Army
  • “It has been terrific working here at Atlas for the past ten years. It gives me a sense of pride and peace of mind.” — Gerry Kirch, Measurement Process Superintendent, Atlas Energy; U.S. Air Force (retired)
  • “I have been with Atlas since 2004, and started as a well tender and worked my way up.” — Kent D Lowry, Production Foreman, Atlas Energy; U.S. Army (retired)
  • “I’ve been impressed with the emphasis on safety and integrity by the entire team here at Williams, from the Board of Directors and our CEO, all the way to the individual field techs. Their dedication to the communities, our families, and the environment remind me of the commitment I experienced in the Army. It’s reassuring to know one of our nation’s major energy sources is in the hands of people of integrity.” — Susan Oliver, Corporate Communications, Williams; U.S. Army (Retired)
  • “As someone who has lived in western Pennsylvania most of my life, it has been a wonderful experience being part of this new frontier of natural gas. The people who live in this region tend to stay. Now they are beginning to see the benefits of the land they inherited from their grandparents who were aware of the value of oil and gas. Grammy and Pappy are smiling down at them now.” — Rob Webb, Land Agent, Atlas Energy; U.S. Army (retired)

READ MORE:

  • “Marcellus Shale companies lean toward veterans and those with farming or forestry backgrounds who are used to hard work, [Linda Vanderpool, administrator of the CareerLink office in Williamsport] said.” (Patriot-News, 8/24/10)
  • “Chesapeake hiring veterans for leadership: Chesapeake is luring former junior military officers to the company, rather than relying exclusively on university-educated petroleum engineers to fill those jobs. … The Oklahoma City-based oil and natural gas company has hired nearly three dozen veterans since the hiring program meant to groom Chesapeake’s future leaders began in June 2008.” (Seeking Alpha, 11/11/10)
  • “Companies exploring for natural gas in Western Pennsylvania are interested in veterans, said Terri Campbell, vice president of operations for Private Industry Council of Westmoreland/Fayette Inc., which operates employment, education and training programs. ‘The companies involved in the Marcellus shale look very favorably at veterans because of their work ethic,’ and the fact they are accustomed to working long hours, Campbell said. Chesapeake Energy Corp. has an active military recruitment campaign, said Michael Lucas, recruiting supervisor.” (Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, 10/4/10)
  • “It’s no wonder that some of the first Pennsylvanians who are actually getting jobs doing the actual drilling are workers used to grueling schedules—war veterans. One of them is Joshua Cannon, 30, of Bethel Park, Pennsylvania, who served three tours of duty in Iraq, the last two with the Army’s highly regarded 101st Airborne Division. He was discharged in 2008, just as the recession hit, and found nothing but heartache in his search for a salaried job to support his wife and two children.” (National Geographic, 10/14/10)
  • “[Rick Woodbeck of Towanda] is a natural gas driller with Chesapeake Energy. A roughneck, as they are called. He drills into the Marcellus shale gas deposits miles below the surface of the earth. ‘I was in the Army National Guard and I came back from Iraq. Instead of going to sit behind a desk I decided to try something different and I had a friend who was on a rig. He told me about it and got me an interview. A couple weeks later I started out on a drilling rig,’ Woodbeck said.” (WNEP-TV, 5/19/10)