The Permian Basin Water in Energy Conference® connects industry leaders and researchers, sharing best practices and cutting-edge approaches to some of the oil and gas industry’s most pressing issues. The University of Texas Permian Basin College of Business Advisory Council, with Jim Woodcock at the helm, planted the idea for the conference in 2017. Now in its fourth year, the PBWIEC® is a sought-after networking and industry annual event. The Shepperd Leadership Institute at The University of Texas Permian Basin is the home for the PBWIEC®, allowing students to benefit from the conference proceeds.

Permian Basin Water in Energy Conference logo


Through the engagement of local and worldwide business leaders, the Permian Basin Water In Energy Conference® (PBWIEC®) will provide an annual conference to facilitate the development and sharing of information regarding the evolving usage and role of water in the Permian Basin’s Energy Industry.


photo of Jim Woodcock

Jim Woodcock

Jim previously owned Hy-Bon Engineering, for 27 years. While running Hy-Bon, he also served as Chairman of Teton Petroleum, a O&G production company listed on the American Stock Exchange. Additionally, he cofounded Renovar Energy, a waste to Energy company.

Click to read more about Jim Woodcock…

photo of Blair Flanagan

Blair Flanagan

Blair Flanagan, who joined the team in January 2021 as the Director of Special Programs for the John Ben Shepperd Leadership Institute key responsibilities include organizing and leading all the events hosted by the Shepperd Leadership Institute as the lead Event Planner.

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photo of Steve Beach

Steve Beach

Dr. Beach is Dean of the College of Business at the University of Texas Permian Basin. Since his arrival at UTPB, the college has experienced exciting growth, fostered by the dedication of its faculty and staff and the support of industry leaders in the Permian Basin.

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photo of Kirk Edwards

Kirk Edwards

Biography coming soon…

photo of Michele Harmon

Michele Harmon

Dr. Michele Harmon began her career working for two Fortune 500 companies, then transitioned back to education serving as a middle school teacher and administrator, and worked as a director in three large urban school districts in Texas serving as the Director of Special Programs, Human Resources, and Career and Technical Education.

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photo of Richard Brantley

Richard Brantley

Richard Brantley joined University Lands in 1999, holding multiple positions within the organization prior to his current role as Senior Vice President of Operations. University Lands is a part of The University of Texas System and manages 2.1 million acres of land in 19 West Texas counties, which produces revenue that is deposited into the Permanent University Fund (PUF).

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photo of Steve Melzer

Stephen Melzer

Steve Melzer is a consulting engineer in Midland, Texas specializing in CO2 injection projects, enhanced oil recovery (EOR), carbon capture utilization and storage, reservoir properties and horizontal well reservoir depressuring projects.

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photo of Steven Pruett

Steven Pruett

Steven H. Pruett is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Elevation Resources LLC, a Permian Basin focused exploration and production company which he co-founded in 2013.

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Max Wright photo

Max Wright

Max Wright is a long-time Midland civil trial attorney with extensive experience in both oil and gas and personal injury litigation who practices with the Shafer, Davis, O’Leary & Stoker, P.C. firm in its Midland office.

Click to read more about Max Wright…