J. Michael Vess
Chairman and managing owner of Vess Oil
Mr. Vess co-founded Vess Oil in 1979 and is the Chairman of Vess Oil, effective July 2012. Mr. Vess previously served as the President and Chief Executive Officer of Vess Oil since 1987. Mr. Vess received a Bachelor of Business Administration from Wichita State University in 1973 and subsequently received his CPA certificate. Mr. Vess served on the Board of Directors and Executive Committees for the Kansas Independent Oil and Gas Association (“KIOGA”), including Chairman of the KIOGA Tax Committee. In addition, Mr. Vess is a current member of the Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission Outreach Committee.
Chief Executive Officer
Effective July 2012, Mr. Hill was named Chief Executive Officer of Vess Oil. Mr. Hill is responsible for the coordination and supervision of exploration and production, the acquisition of oil and natural gas reserves and the planning, directing, and coordinating of finance activities. Mr. Hill joined Vess Oil in February 2010 as Vice President and Chief Financial Officer and served in that position through June 2012. Prior to joining Vess Oil, Mr. Hill spent approximately ten years in the Energy Investment Banking group of Raymond James & Associates, Inc., completing numerous public equity offerings, advisory engagements and private securities assignments for a wide spectrum of energy industry clients, including many exploration and production companies, until his departure in January 2010. Mr. Hill earned his A.B. in Economics with honors from Harvard College in 1998 and an M.B.A. from the Darden Graduate School of Business at the University of Virginia in 2003.
Chief Operating Officer
•Mr. Brumley joined Vess in October 2020, serving as Chief Operating Officer of Vess Oil Corporation. Prior to joining Vess, Mr. Brumley was co-founder of Auburn Energy Management, providing operating and technical advisory services to financial markets and E&P companies. Prior to starting Auburn in 2015, Mr. Brumley worked for privately funded and publicly traded E&P operating and services companies across multiple U.S. basins over his >20 year career. Graduated from Harding University with a B.S. Chemistry and the Colorado School of Mines with a M.S. in Engineering Systems. He has served on the boards of several industry societies, including SPE and AADE, and he has presented and chaired sessions at multiple industry events.
Senior Vice President of Land and Acquisitions
Mr. Gaudreau is responsible for land, contracts and acquisitions. Mr. Gaudreau has continuously held the position of Vice President of Land and Acquisitions since he joined Vess Oil in 2002. Prior to joining Vess Oil, he held the title of Manager, Land and Acquisitions for Stelbar Oil Corporation, Inc. beginning in 1989. Mr. Gaudreau graduated from the University of Kansas in 1977 with a Bachelors degree in Economics. Mr. Gaudreau belongs to the American Association of Professional Landmen, is a Director and serves on the Executive Committee of KIOGA, and belongs to the Dallas Acquisitions, Divestitures, and Mergers Energy Forum.
Vice President of Land and Acquisitions
Mr. Fidler is responsible for land, contracts, acquisitions and other business development activities. Mr. Fidler joined Vess Oil in March 2014 as Land Manager – Texas and served in that position through December 2016. Prior to joining Vess Oil, Mr. Fidler spent approximately five years at Encana Oil & Gas (USA) Inc., where he served as Group Lead, Land and Land Negotiator for the Mid-Continent region. Previously, Mr. Fidler served as Landman for Hunt Petroleum Corporation and Acquisitions Analyst for Chesapeake Energy Corporation. Mr. Fidler earned a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in Energy Management from the University of Oklahoma in 2005 and an M.B.A. degree in Finance from the Cox School of Business at Southern Methodist University in 2010.
Vice President of Financial Reporting
Mr. Howarter is responsible for the financial reporting aspects of Vess Oil and other related entities. Mr. Howarter has continuously served as the Vice President of Financial Reporting for Vess Oil since he joined Vess Oil in May 2007. Prior to joining Vess Oil, Mr. Howarter was a Manager at Regier Carr & Monroe, L.L.P. Mr. Howarter continuously held the position of Manager since the time he joined Regier Carr & Monroe, L.L.P. in January of 2005 through his departure in May of 2007. Previously, Mr. Howarter was a Partner and head of the Audit Department of the Wichita office of Grant Thornton, LLP. Mr. Howarter received his Bachelor of Business Administration degree in Accounting from Wichita State University in 1978. He is a licensed CPA in Kansas. Mr. Howarter is currently a member of the Accounting Advisory Board of Wichita State University, the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, the Kansas Society of Certified Public Accountants and the Petroleum Accountants Society of Kansas. He is also a past president and treasurer of the Petroleum Accountants Society of Kansas.
Norman A Zeller, CPA
Vice President – Financial Compliance and Analysis
Norman is responsible for tax matters, financial compliance and market valuation of hedges and asset retirement obligations for Vess Oil and other related entities. Prior to joining Vess Oil, Norman worked on Vess Oil tax compliance matters for Richard J. Koll Inc. Norman received his Accounting degree from Wichita State University in 1997. He is licensed to practice in the State of Kansas.
Vice President - Administration and Controller
Tammy oversees the accounting operations for Vess Oil and several related entities and is responsible for administrative functions and procedures. Tammy joined Vess Oil Corporation in 1995 and is one of the longest tenured members of the organization. As the company grew, Tammy transitioned to serve as Controller, and she has served as Vice President of Administration since 2013. Prior to joining Vess Oil, Tammy spent over five years at Koch Industries, specializing in the oil business. Tammy earned her Bachelor of Business Administration degree in Accounting from Wichita State University in 1989. She is a member of the Professional Accountants Society of Kansas.
C.J. Lett III
Advisor and Principal
Mr. Lett has over 30 years of experience in oil and gas production purchases, operations and oil-related business development in the mid-continent region. Mr. Lett was a Managing Partner of Acid Services LLC started in 1996 to develop and consolidate the oil field service businesses. In 2006 Acid Services LLC merged with Jet Star Oil Field Services , which merged into Basic Energy Services, Inc. (NASD: BAS) in 2007. Mr. Lett was a Managing Partner of Bison Propane formed in 1995 to develop and consolidate the retail propane bottle exchange business. In 1996 Bison Propane was merged into Blue Rhino (NYSE: FGP) prior to the Blue Rhino IPO in 1998. In 1997, Bison Energy Corporation, founded by Mr. Lett in 1982, was merged into Middle Bay Oil Company (NASDAQ: MBOC) and in 1999 merged into 3Tec Energy (NASDAQ: TTEN). Prior to forming Bison Energy, Mr. Lett worked in the Land and Legal Department for Carson Petroleum Corporation. Mr. Lett received a BS in Business from the University of Colorado and a JD from Oklahoma City School of Law. Mr. Lett is currently a member of the Business Advisors Counsel for the School of Entrepreneurship School at the University of Colorado.