NDPC Honors Public Servants & First Woman Hall of Fame Inductee

Kathleen Neset honored for lifetime of achievement and service to the state and industry;

Rep. George Keiser honored for service to the state and commitment to economic development;

Duane Jesch of MBI Energy Services honored for outreach and service to the industry.

Bismarck, N.D. – Kathleen Neset, President of Neset Consulting Service, Inc., became the first woman to be inducted into the North Dakota Petroleum Council (NDPC) Hall of Fame on Tuesday, Sept. 22 during the organization’s 2015 Annual Meeting. The NDPC recognized Neset’s many years of service to the industry, as well as her role as a leader on many industry and state boards and committees.

“As a successful businesswoman, a committed teacher and a dedicated public servant, Kathleen is a role model for both women and men alike,” said Ron Ness, president of the NDPC. “She has been an invaluable member of our organization and industry, but more important, she has been a tremendous asset for our state.”

Neset has served on the NDPC Board of Directors for 13 years and is on the NDPC Executive Committee. She regularly serves the NDPC by lending her more than 35 years of experience in the industry and her passion for teaching to provide informational seminars on oil and gas production and extraction, which has been critical in community outreach efforts throughout North Dakota.

“Kathleen’s poise, approachability and ability to explain difficult or technical topics in an easy-to-understand way has made her a trustworthy and genuine source of information for our industry, as well as the general public,” said Ness. “We want to thank Kathleen for her willingness to share her knowledge, expertise and passion for education that has made her our industry’s greatest ambassador.”

Neset grew up in New Jersey and received a Bachelor of Arts in Geology from Brown University. Neset came to North Dakota in 1979 to pursue work as an independent petroleum geologist. In 1980, she and her late husband Roy Neset, a wellsite supervisor, formed Neset Enterprises. During the down cycle of the 1980s and 1990s, Neset taught science at Tioga High School, worked as the school business manager and served ten years on the Tioga School Board. In the early 2000s oilfield work picked up and Kathleen grew the business as the Bakken took off. At the peak of development, Neset Consulting had wellsite geologists and mudloggers on 60 well sites in North Dakota, Montana, Kansas and Oklahoma.

In addition to her service to many industry organizations, Neset also serves as the chairman of the North Dakota State Board of Higher Education and on the board of directors for the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. She has shared her expertise nationally, including speaking engagements before the National Governors Association Natural Resources Committee, at the U.S. Army War College National Security Seminar and at the U.S. Army War College.

Recipients of this honor must have contributed significantly to the functions and activities representing oil and gas in North Dakota, working on behalf of NDPC membership and be committed to the industry and organization’s well-being. For more information on the NDPC Hall of Fame and other inductees, visitwww.ndoil.org.

NDPC presents Duane Jesch and Rep. George Keiser with 2015 Outstanding Public Service Awards

In addition to the Hall of Fame, the NDPC also presented Rep. George Keiser and Duane Jesch with the 2015 Outstanding Service Awards, which are presented to one elected public official and one industry representative who go above and beyond their respective roles and duties.

This year’s award for public service was awarded to Keiser for his more than 22 years of service in the North Dakota House of Representatives, as well as his role as Chairman of the House Industry, Business and Labor Committee and member of the Natural Resources Committee.

“George’s role as the Chairman for the IBL Committee cannot be underestimated in value to the industry and the state’s overall business climate,” said Ness. “He has always been a proponent of pushing through bureaucracy and working for better government with oversight rather than control.”

Keiser was integral in passing many common sense bills, including legislation that formed the North Dakota Pipeline Authority, the Western Area Water System, and the Pipeline Footprint bill, which became the first in the nation to map gathering pipeline systems. He was also the primary sponsor of legislation passed last session that will allow for the recycling of drill cuttings, which will add value to this former waste stream and further reduce impacts to our land and truck traffic in western North Dakota.

“These have all been major issues and just a handful of the real work he delivers for common sense government for North Dakota businesses,” said Ness. “We want to thank him for his role in growing our economy and jobs through his dedication and commitment to maintaining a positive business environment in North Dakota.”

Keiser is owner of Quality Printing in Bismarck, N.D. and had previously served in the U.S. Army and on the Bismarck City Commission.  George and his wife, Kathy, have been major supporters of the Ronald McDonald House in Bismarck.  They have four children.

Duane Jesch recognized for outreach and volunteerism on behalf of industry

Duane Jesch was awarded the 2015 Outstanding Service Award for industry representatives who go beyond the normal call of duty to build relationships between the industry and public and work toward improving the industry’s public image by supporting the NDPC Oil Can! Program and other association activities.

“Duane has always been a helpful volunteer and could always be counted on to help,” said Ness. “He was instrumental in getting the Oil Can! program and other events off the ground, and the enthusiasm that he brought to these events has gone so far in helping us build relationships throughout western North Dakota.”

Jesch, a native of Dickinson, N.D., is a 40 year veteran of North Dakota’s oil industry. He started his oilfield career in 1975 working as a truck driver for Mantador Services in Belfield and then later worked for Power Fuels as a salesman. During the down turn in the 1980s, he moved to Nevada and worked in the mining industry before being recruited back to North Dakota to work in the oil industry.  In 1996, he began working for the trucking company Missouri Basin, now known as MBI Energy Services, and continues to work there today.

Jesch continues to volunteer for both the NDPC and the Dickinson API Chapter. He and his wife, Kathy, have five children and live in Dickinson.

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Read the article online at ndoil.org.