The Life of a Landman

CNN Money recently had an article on the 25 best jobs in America. On a list of 100 they ranked jobs with the best growth, best pay and the most satisfying work. The position of landman was listed in spot #3. A CNN Money reporter reached out to us to get some insight into what landmen do. With offices across the nation, and landmen from different disciplines and different backgrounds, we were able to provide them with some truly unique landmen experiences. One such story is that of  Brian Kiser from our Denver office. He submitted a story he titled “Have Bike, Will Travel” to The Playbook about a recent assignment that he was given where he was able to really get out in the field. His story tells you a lot about why so many people love being landmen.

Located in the middle of the Unitah Basin, Duschesne Utah is pretty rural. Stark population surrounded by stark beauty, to which the adjacent Starvation State Park is a testament. Centered around Starvation Lake, this ominously named park is framed by the beautiful mesas and buttes Utah is famous for. Three miles from town, down some dirt roads in the park, I found a nice spot on a hilltop being the highest point on the mesa, to park and camp; quiet solitude and 360 degree views of the canyon lands.

I’ve never been too keen on hotels. They seem to remove the opportunity for spontaneity and adventure that traveling can provide. Learning to eschew certain creature comforts has found me in some interesting places over the years. From a tee-pee in New Mexico eating roadkill venison steaks on Thanksgiving, to a drafty squat house during a Tulsa winter full of friendly hobos and pitbulls; I would never trade these experiences for room service and an ice machine. That is not to say this form of travel is for everyone. It’s not. In fact, it appeared I was the only person camped in the entire park. Utah temperatures are already below Colorado  in areas and I supposed that is unappealing to some.

For a week on my private mountaintop I watched the sunset, had campfires, listened to Hand Williams Jr., and fell asleep to roving bands of howling coyotes. And every morning, a quick outdoor shower while watching the sun rise before heading to the courthouse. Who needs coffee when you can pour cold water on your head in 40 degree weather? It’s a jolt to be sure.

During my time in Duschesne, every morning while returning to camp I drove past a large drill site in the midst of being fracked and a new pipeline being buried. I was struck by the unusual inter-connectedness of myself and those workers – their work versus mine. Despite the obvious differences, common ground exists; we’re both functioning as tiny pieces of an Industry supporting an incalculable amount of families industries, and subsidiary infrastructures existing on  a vast, global scale. It was a moment that gave me pause and a little self reflection. So often we’re consumed with the demands of the now – the immediacy of things right in front to four face – that we overlook the bigger picture. As the saying goes, familiarity breed contempt. That is to say, the absence of learning and discovery is the death of thought and growth. I’ve found that for myself, in choosing the unfamiliar, the challenging, the proverbial road less traveled, I’m continually confronting my own preconceptions and redefining my paradigm. And this, for me at least, has proven to be a great thing.

In the Community: PLM Helps to Support Ronald McDonald House

Give more than you take.  This is the philosophy of Purple Land Management.  It’s not just a motto.  It is the guiding principle that we use when making day-to-day decisions.  It’s also the reason why we believe so strongly in supporting our community.  During the 2016 holiday season, employees at PLM’s Fort Worth office donated over 100 pounds of food to the Tarrant Area Food Bank.  This tremendous outpouring of generosity motivated us to want to do more for our neighbors in need.  So, during each quarter of 2017, PLM will focus on helping a deserving community organization.  For the first quarter, we chose to donate to the Ronald McDonald House of Fort Worth. 

Having a child who is sick enough to be hospitalized is a stressful and emotionally taxing situation.  The Ronald McDonald House of Fort Worth is helping to ease this burden for parents by providing them a comfortable and affordable place to stay that is close to the hospital.  During the month of February, PLM is doing their part to help the Ronald McDonald House fulfill their mission by collecting needed items for these families to use during their time at the house.  This is just one example of the employees of PLM giving more than they take to make our community a better place.

About Ronald McDonald House of Fort Worth

Ronald McDonald House of Fort Worth is an invaluable resource for families of sick or injured children who are receiving medical care in area hospitals.  They provide a home-away-from-home for these families who need to be close to their hospitalized kids.  The Ronald McDonald House is located within walking distance of many of the city’s hospitals, including Cook Children’s Medical Center.

Ronald McDonald House

Sponsorship: OKC Rescue Mission

city-mission-2Purple Land Management was a table sponsor for the Oklahoma City Rescue Mission fund raising event on September 14, 2016. Bob Kelly, General Council at Ascent, is on the City Rescue Mission Board of Directors. Kade Smith, Matt Reser and Serena Evans from Ascent were in attendance. The City Rescue Mission helps the homeless and near homeless in the OKC Area. They served over 20,000 people last year. It’s a Christian based group who provide food, training, shelter and support with the goal of moving them back to independence. There were some wonderful testimonials from several individuals who have benefited greatly from the services provided by The City Rescue Mission. David Brooks said “I intend to do some volunteer work there along with my Son in the coming months. A great cause doing great things for people in need here in OKC. I’m proud of PLM for supporting this effort.” city-mission-1

PLM to Attend Summer NAPE

Purple 1Purple Land Management attended the Summer NAPE expo from August 10th through 11th, 2016. The AAPL debuted their brand new NAPE Theater to allow for the presentation of services and prospects. Nathan McIntyre, our Vice President of Land and Technical Operations was the first speaker and gave an amazing presentation about Overdrive™ powered by Esri®. His speech was posted to Facebook Live and drew traffic to the booth for questions and demonstrations of Overdrive™.

Purple offices were represented by Jesse Hejny, Bryan Cortney, Adrian Macias, Nathan McIntyre, Ryan Barnhart, Arthur Medina, Thomas Carrington, Taylor Stallons and Callie Soltis. It was a very successful event for the company and the attendees were able to catch up with old friends and customers.

We hosted a happy hour at Hearsay on the Green with more than 100 people representing over 50 different companies that PLM does work for across the nation. There was a caricaturist who provided portraits to those at the happy hour. Arthur Medina took a swing at it as well. He found out that he should stick to land work. Thank you to those who attended Summer NAPE!

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PLM to Attend YPE OKC Event

OKC YPE 4PLM attended the YPE OKC Charity Golf event. Their team dominated the golf tournament. The team consisted of Arthur Medina, Gene Vallandingham, Lindsey Fixley, Chelsea Lewis, Liz Thompson and Christen Morgan. Complete with American flags, walkie talkies (to game plan from separate golf carts), air horns (to let the competition know they were coming), and exploding golf balls (to blast their competitors with dust), they conquered this event. They took home memories, and most importantly, trophies. The Playbook Committee couldn’t hear past the celebratory cheering to get one on one interviews with the team but rumor has it Gene Vallandingham caught 22 pokemon on the course in between rounds of golf. Our team showed the YPE OKC golf event #thepurpleway!

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Sponsorship: AAPL Annual Convention

AAPL 4AAPL recently held the annual meeting in Orlando, Florida. The convention is a great event for the oil and gas community, specifically land professionals, to engage in networking and sharpen their knowledge with specific topics. PLM was eager to be a participant in the convention and to visit with industry colleagues. In light of the industry environment, the folks who attended had a positive attitude and continue to work together to embrace the ongoing industry challenges. We are also very grateful for the AAPL’s ongoing effort to continue educating its members and the communities the  industry impacts. Whether it was the award ceremony, the golf outing held, meeting people’s families or the time spent in the lectures, the AAPL did a tremendous job with the event. PLM sponsored the golf tournament which turned out to be good luck for our players. Macias and Medina’s team took first place at the golf tournament. Mary Gray and Chuck Walton of EOG were on the victorious team. The recent Orlando tragedies were kept close to everyone’s mind and our thoughts and prayers continue to be with the families of all of those affected.

PLM to Attend Permian Event

Winning TeamThe PLM Permian team recently participated in the PBLA Shrimp Boil and Golf tournament–taking 1st place at the golf tournament (400 plus participants)! The team consisted of Oxy’s Justin Mayhall, XTO’s Matt Midkiff, RRIG’s Jet Ellis and PLM’s  Arthur Medina. With a grand champion score of (-19), the PLM team was presented the tournament’s champions trophy and coveted jacket by former president George W. Bush. The team steamrolled the competition, and rumors swirling around the tournament was that the PLM team single-handedly made oil prices surge that day. The Playbook committee was able to get an exclusive interview with Arthur Medina right after the tournament while the team was still in the winner’s circle. Here’s what he had to say:

“We felt great after eating the chicken mini’s at the second hole, and really think that jump started our birdie train. Jet was incredible with his approach shots, Matt was a putting machine, Justin (playing out of a bag that was not his) was crushing the ball off the tee- each member of the team was very involved with the win. We have some big decisions to make coming up with who we choose to sponsor our group moving forward, but that’s a talking point for another day – today, we’re PBLA and world champions!”

A special thanks to Jance Floyd, Thomas Carrington and Sutton Steele for helping coordinate the entire event.

In the Community: PLM Canton Helps Harvest for Hunger

PLM Canton recently coordinated a fund raising effort in the Canton Ohio office to benefit the Akron-Canton Regional Foodbank and their annual Harvest for Hunger campaign. “Harvest for Hunger” is a partnership between four food banks that serve 21 counties in Ohio. This particular campaign is the Foodbank’s largest and it helps to support food distribution for the organization all year long. By contributing to this cause they were able to assist the 1 in 4 children or the 1 in 7 individuals in Foodbank’s service area who struggle with hunger. Every $1 raised helped to provide 4 meals for a person in need. The PLM Canton office set a group goal to raise $300 in monetary donations, in addition to 50 lbs of food. They’re pleased to announce that they far-exceeded our goal and ended up raising $326 and additional 289 lbs of food!