The numbers are not yet in on everything, but the Annual Convention and Exhibition (ACE) in Calgary, Canada is shaping up to be a better than expected success.
It was well attended with 4,257 total attendees and 155 exhibiting companies. The technical sessions went well with 1,834 abstracts submitted, which was a new record, resulting in 808 oral and poster presentations. And the exhibit hall was packed.
This year’s ACE also hosted an experiment with an new innovation: the sound system for the technical sessions used FM radio broadcast to personal headsets, solving prior sound problems.
A round of applause goes to the Organizing Committee and to the general chair and general vice-chair, Paul MacKay and Jen Russel-Houston. There is a more detailed ACE recap by EXPLORER managing editor Brian Ervin in this issue (see page 10).
Finalizing the Budget
The Executive Committees, both outgoing and incoming, held their year-end meetings after the convention in Kananaskis (pronounced Cana-nas-kiss) west of Calgary, a location chosen because it was actually less expensive than staying in Calgary. The EC usually holds these meetings in Tulsa on June 30 and July 1, but this resulted in a savings in travel costs since most officers were coming to ACE already.
Both meetings conducted the usual business, and the incoming EC approved the 2016-17 budget to which I referred in my last column as “a nearly balanced budget.” At the time of this writing, the budget was being recast for the next EC meeting held the weekend before URTeC in San Antonio, and should be within about 1 percent of a balanced budget.
As we all know, last year was a challenging year for AAPG, our sister societies and the industry as a whole, but we are looking forward this year with ideas for increasing revenue and broadening our base of revenue-generating services. My call last month for ideas from Members has produced a few concepts we will be considering as well.
Membership is reviewed every year, with membership drops typically occurring at the end of the year, because a membership doesn’t expire until the end of the full fiscal year after dues have not been paid.
This year, the total dropped was 6,598 in all categories.
Of those, the significant categories were voting Members (1,043), Associate Members (1,922) and Student-YP Members (3,466).
The projections for the end of this fiscal year are not very different.
Certainly, the economic situation is having an impact on membership.
One of the prime goals this year is to stem that tide, and that’s where focusing on products and services that Members consider valuable is going to be important. Increasing technical content generation by committees, Technical Interest Groups and Special Interest Groups could help in this regard, will be a focus of the EC.
As this issue of the EXPLORER is arriving in mailboxes and inboxes, the Unconventional Resources and Technology Conference (URTeC) is under way in San Antonio.
The AAPG-SEG International Conference and Exhibition (ICE) in Cancun, Mexico is Sept. 6-9. It has a full complement of technical sessions, topics that have application in the domestic U.S. basins, and it’s closer to U.S. Members than any other ICE will probably be for a long time. Airfare from Houston to Cancun right now is under $400. I encourage you to take a serious look at it.
The 100th Anniversary 2017 ACE is in Houston next April and is shaping up to be a great event. The 100th Anniversary Planning Committee will be running articles in the EXPLORER each month, so watch for those.
July was the first month of the fiscal year, so it was when the EC organized and planned the rest of the year, so it was a good time to consider new ideas and alternatives, so I want to reiterate my invitation to Members to contact me with ideas or questions.