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NGI Leadership and Staff

Stanford Main QuadThe Natural Gas Initiative draws its expertise and leadership from across the Stanford campus. Any Stanford researcher with interests in natural gas and related fields may affiliate with NGI. The initiative leaders and staff and the research focus area leaders coordinate with each other, the Stanford community, and external stakeholders to develop and direct the NGI program and research portfolio.
Director of the Natural Gas Initiative. Associate Professor in the Department of Energy Resources Engineering at Stanford University
Adam Brandt, associate professor in Stanford University’s Department of Energy Resources Engineering, will take over the leadership of the university’s Natural Gas Initiative on April 1. Mark Zoback, emeritus professor of geophysics, has directed NGI since the research program was launched in 2015 and is retiring after almost 37 years at Stanford. Frank Wolak, professor of economics, will continue as NGI’s co-director. The interdisciplinary research program generates knowledge needed to use natural gas to its greatest social, economic and environmental benefit.
Co-Director of the Natural Gas Initiative, Holbrook Working Professor of Commodity Price Studies in the Department of Economics at Stanford University
Wolak's fields of specialization are Industrial Organization and Econometric Theory. His recent work studies methods for introducing competition into infrastructure industries — telecommunications, electricity, water delivery and postal delivery services — and on assessing the impacts of these competition policies on consumer and producer welfare. He currently directs the Program on Energy and Sustainable Development (PESD) in the Freeman-Spogli Institute (FSI) for International Studies.
Naomi Boness
Managing Director, Natural Gas Initiative
Managing Director of the Stanford Natural Gas Initiative, is an experienced practitioner in the energy sector with expertise in reservoir geophysics, investment analysis and strategic planning. Prior to joining Stanford in 2019, Dr. Boness has held a variety of technical and management positions at Chevron. She is an invited member of the United Nations Expert Group on Resource Classification and a past Chair of the Society of Exploration Geophysicists Oil and Gas Reserves Committee. Her work has been published in peer-reviewed journals; she presents regularly at professional conferences, and she is the author of several online geophysics and investment courses. Dr. Boness holds a Ph.D. from Stanford University, a M.Sc. from Indiana University and a B.Sc. from the University of Leeds.

Mark Zoback
Advisor Emeritus
Mark Zoback is the Benjamin M. Page Professor of Geophysics and former Director of the Stanford Natural Gas Initiative at Stanford University, co-Director of the SCITS Stanford Center for Induced and Triggered Seismicity (SCITS) and the Stanford Center for Carbon Storage (SCCS). Dr. Zoback conducts research on in situ stress, fault mechanics, and reservoir geomechanics. He is the author/co-author of over 300 technical papers, holder of five patents, and author of two books. Reservoir Geomechanics, published by Cambridge University Press in 2007 is now it's 15th printing.
Tisha Schuller

Tisha Schuller

Strategic Advisor
Tisha Schuller, who earned a bachelor's degree in Earth systems from Stanford, is Strategic Advisor to the Stanford Natural Gas Initiative. Schuller was president of the Colorado Oil & Gas Association when that state's energy companies and the Environmental Defense Fund worked with state regulators to enact the first rules in the United States to reduce methane emissions and volatile gases.
Denise Baughman

Denise Baughman
Geophysics Program Manager of the Stanford Natural Gas Initiative
With an extensive background in program management, Denise joined the Geophysics department in August 2019. Prior to joining the School of Earth, Energy & Environmental Sciences, since 2008, Denise was a Senior Project Manager with the School of Medicine, Stanford Cancer Institute.