Brigham McCown named new president of Alyeska Pipeline
Brigham A. McCown will become the next president of Alyeska Pipeline Service Company in January 2020. The selection was announced by the TAPS Owners Committee.
McCown is the second company president hired as an Alyeska employee following Vice Admiral Thomas Barrett, USCG (Ret.), who was brought on in January 2011 and is retiring.
McCown brings over three decades of executive management, legal, and operational experience in the infrastructure and transportation industries. He currently serves as chairman and CEO of Nouveau Consulting where he advises on matters pertaining to federal security and safety regulations. He is also chairman and founder of the Alliance for Innovation and Infrastructure, a non-partisan think tank leveraging innovation to improve infrastructure safety.
McCown has held several posts at the U.S. Department of Transportation, serving as a direct report to both democratic and republican Secretaries of Transportation including service as the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration’s (PHMSA) first deputy administrator. In 2013, he retired from the U.S. Navy after 25 years of combined active and reserve service as a naval officer and naval aviator.
Outgoing president Admiral Tom Barrett, who will work with McCown during a transition period in January, stated, “I have known Brigham for many years and I share Alyeska’s Owners’ confidence in his excellent fit as Alyeska’s next president and in his ability to lead the organization. I am equally confident in the proud and talented TAPS people, whose dedication to safety, protecting our environment, operational excellence, reliability, efficiency and innovative work will carry TAPS operations into the next 40 years and beyond.”
“Brigham brings a deep and varied range of experience in the regulatory realm to Alyeska, including a sharp focus on operations and an unwavering commitment to safety,” said Jerry Frey, president of ExxonMobil Pipeline Company and chair of the TAPS Owners Committee. “We are confident in his leadership skills, which have been proven in many unique arenas, and in his ability to keep Alyeska and TAPS moving forward during this exciting time for Alaska’s oil and gas industry. Brigham has a high level of enthusiasm for working in Alaska, on the iconic and critical infrastructure of TAPS, and with the men and women of Alyeska Pipeline Service Company.”
“TAPS Owners and Alyeska leaders are grateful to Tom Barrett for his extraordinary leadership,” Frey said. “In his tenure, he built community partnerships, strengthened Alyeska’s culture, advanced the company’s safety record and expanded the focus on ethics, compliance, diversity and innovation. Tom led a transformative shift in Alyeska’s business and maintenance strategy. His leadership and initiatives will have a lasting impact on the company, on TAPS sustainability, and on Alaska.”
With nine years of service as Alyeska president, Barrett is the longest tenured of any Alyeska CEO/President in the company’s 49-year history. During his time at Alyeska, the organization celebrated its 35th and 40th anniversaries, 17 and 18 billionth barrel moved, increased throughput for the first time since 2002, and numerous safety, environment and compliance honors. Under Barrett, the organization evolved and innovated to successfully tackle numerous operational and external challenges.
TAPS reaches landmark, moves its 18 billionth barrel
The 18 billionth barrel of Alaska North Slope crude started down the Trans Alaska Pipeline System (TAPS) from Pump Station 1 in Prudhoe Bay at 8 a.m., December 6, 2019.
“This marks another significant operational milestone for TAPS, for Alaska and Alaskans, for the oil and gas industry, and countless individuals whose work carries on the remarkable legacy of this unique infrastructure,” said Tom Barrett, President of Alyeska Pipeline Service Company, TAPS’ operator. “This milestone brings justifiable TAPS Pride among the smart, tough people at Alyeska Pipeline and our contractors who run TAPS safely every day.”
The launch of the pipeline transformed Alaska from a frontier state to an economic force. June 20, 1977, marked the startup of TAPS operations, with the first barrel of oil arriving in Valdez on July 28, and the first tanker departing the Valdez Marine Terminal a few days later. TAPS’ billionth barrel arrived on January 22, 1980. The 17 billionth barrel started down TAPS on July 19, 2014. Since startup, North Slope crude transported by TAPS has brought in an estimated $145 billion in revenue to the State of Alaska.
Other recent major operations landmarks include: the 40th anniversary of TAPS operations in 2017; the number of tankers loaded (22,600 through October 2019); and the number of tanker escorts provided by Alyeska’s Ship Escort/Response Vessel System (nearly 14,000).
“TAPS workers achieve these milestones with a laser focus on safety and the environment. Our team just marked 26 million hours of work without a serious injury,” said Barrett.
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Alyeska Traveling Health Fair: Positive PWS impact
Alyeska's Traveling Health and Safety Fair spent four days in the Prince William Sound communities of Tatitlek and Chenega Bay recently, marking the 21st year of the annual event. Eight health care providers from across Alaska, nine UAA pharmacy students and faculty, and a pair of Alyeska employees joined the crew of Edison Chouest Offshore’s utility tug Ross Chouest, which transported the contingent on its five-day journey from Valdez to Tatitlek to Chenega Bay and back.
The group facilitated two full-day schedules of events each in Tatitlek and Chenega Bay. Both stops included a free health fair available for all residents, where they could receive basic biometric screenings and information on nutrition, healthy relationships, tobacco prevention, active lifestyles and more. Throughout both days there were also hearing, vision and development checkups for the community’s kids and classroom sessions about mental health and wellness, first aid and handwashing, positive communication and healthy food choices.
Each morning, health fair contributors ate breakfast with local youth at their schools. There were also special men's breakfasts, women's teas, and community dinners that packed each school's respective gymnasium, offering tasty and healthy menus that were headlined by Cajun-style shrimp and corn soup created by ECO Chef Chad Cavalier.
Local leaders and high school students also had the opportunity to tour the Ross Chouest, which provides a variety of services around the Prince William Sound area. Captain Carlos Alemany and his enthusiastic crew led visitors around the unique vessel’s deck, into its engine room, and other areas.
Even rare moments of downtime were filled with opportunities for health fair participants to encourage healthy lifestyles by playing basketball or jumping rope with local youth and assist in community projects like sewing tribal regalia, organizing donated library books, and prepping healthy snacks for schoolkids.
"The Prince William Sound Traveling Health Fair is the culmination of months of careful planning and preparation by Alyeska staff, contractors and community partners," explained Kate Dugan, Alyeska's Valdez Communications Manager. "It was special to make the trip for the first time with Edison Chouest Offshore and the terrific crew aboard the Ross Chouest. The event is always an adventure and this year was no exception."
Alyeska engineers step up in wake of big quake
Alyeska’s VanWingerden featured in API campaign
Operations Director Klint VanWingerden explains how our organization is optimizing operations and applying new technologies to current work as part of the American Petroleum Institute's (API) new State of American Energy 2019 campaign: We are America's Generation Energy. Klint is featured in a State of American Energy 2019 video, an annual report, a profile story and social media.
Klint said he recognizes the impact the oil industry has had on his family, education, career and even his outdoor hobbies outside of work like snow machine racing. This fall, he welcomed an API film crew to the OCC to see how the pipeline is monitored and brought the crew the track to his home in the Mat-Su Valley, where he talked about his work, family and fun.
This week, VanWingerden is in Washington D.C. to be a part of API's State of American Energy 2019 kickoff event, where they debut the new video and report.
Read Kint's profile and learn more about his work along TAPS, how pipeline work is being optimized and the training he's doing to train for the Iron Dog, click here.