Meet our Advisory Board 

Mr. Larry Archibald
Non-Executive Director
Woodside Energy Ltd.
Advisory Board Chair
Houston, TX
Alumni & Development Committee

Larry E. Archibald has spent close to 40 years in roles associated with the oil and gas industry. He is currently a non-executive director at Woodside Energy Ltd, an Australian-based exploration and production (E&P) company. 

From 2008 to late 2015 he was the Senior Vice President of Worldwide Exploration and Appraisal for ConocoPhillips. Prior to that, he worked in a variety of exploration leadership and commercial roles for BP and Amoco.

Archibald earned a BS in Geology from Colgate University in 1979, an MS in Geosciences from the University of Arizona in 1982, and an MBA from Regis College in 1986. Larry joined the Geosciences Advisory Board in 2016.

Ms. Nancy Beckvar
Education & Outreach Committee Chair 
Seattle, WA
Education & Outreach Committee

Nancy Beckvar received her MS (86) in Stratigraphy and Paleontology from the Department of Geosciences in 1986. As an Environmental Scientist for NOAA's Assessment and Restoration Division in Seattle, WA, she worked on a variety of coastal hazardous waste site projects around the United States.

Nancy has served on the Geosciences Advisory Board since 2008.

Dr. John Dreier
Alumni & Development Committee Chair
Private Consultant
Golden, CO 80401
Phone: 303-619-9410

Alumni & Development Committee

John Dreier has served on the Department of Geosciences Advisory Board since 2010.

Dr. Stacie Gibbins
Spring, TX 77389 

Alumni & Development Committee

Stacie Gibbins received her MS (2001) and PhD (2006) in Geosciences from the University of Arizona. 

She is currently a Senior Geologist at ExxonMobil Corporation on the Petroleum Systems Analysis Team.

Dr. Tekla Harms
Massachusetts Professor in Chemistry and Natural History
Amherst College
Amherst, MA 01002
Phone: 413-542-2711
Research & Collaboration Committee

Tekla Harms received her MS (82) from Queens University and her PhD (86) from the University of Arizona. She is currently a Massachusetts Professor in Chemistry and Natural History (geology) at Amherst College. Tekla's teaching and research interests include geodynamics and the evolution of mountain belts and the interactions of plate boundaries in creating those belts.

Tekla has served on the Department of Geosciences Advisory Board since 2018.

Mr. Ray Leonard
Bellaire, Texas
phone: 713-382-7316
Research & Collaboration Committee


Ray Leonard received his BS with Honors in Geosciences (75) from the University of Arizona, and MA in Geology (77) from the University of Texas-Austin. He is President and CEO of Hyperdynamics, a NYSE-Amex listed company exploring for Oil and Gas in West Africa. His 33-year career in International Oil and Gas Exploration includes Executive Positions with Amoco, the Russian Oil Major YUKOS, and the Kuwait Energy Company. He has been active in the debate on world oil reserves, presenting at national and international forums. Ray joined the Geosciences Advisory Board in 2010.

Mr. Rick LeVeque
Long Beach, CA
Alumni & Development Committee

Rick LeVeque began his career with a BS from UC Santa Cruz, followed by 2 years at the USGS in Menlo Park (fieldwork in SW Arizona). He graduated from UA with an MS in 1981 (thesis committee Dickenson, Coney, and Gordon Haxel).  He spent 24 years with Unocal, with a focus on development geology (CA, Thailand), exploration geology (Chile, Kazakhstan, Indonesia).  Rick then began working in Planning/Strategy and obtained an MBA (U Houston), followed by work with the SVP Exploration in Corporate. A brief year in Bangladesh as Exploration Manager was followed by time with a Corporate group establishing knowledge management practices (primarily Thailand). Rick left Unocal when Chevron acquired them and spent the final 10 years of his career with Occidental in Long Beach, CA, working again in Planning.

Mr. Anthony Murer
Bakersfield, CA

Alumni & Development Committee


Anthony Murer received his BS from SUNY at Plattsburgh in 1974 and an MS in geology from the University of Arizona in 1982. He started working as an Exploration Geologist in 1981 for Mobil Oil Corp in Houston and continued working for Mobil as  Production Geologist in Denver, Colorado, and in Bakersfield, California.  This was followed by stints as field technical coordinator and as a research and special projects coordinator. Tony remained in California upon the merger of Mobil's and Shell's operations there in the combined company, Aera Energy LLC where Tony served in a variety of positions including Geologist, Innovation and Strategic Development Advisor,  and Geological and Engineering Advisor, from which he is recently retired.
Ms. Marie Pearthree
Central Arizona Project (Retired)
4203 E. 6th Street
Tucson, AZ 85711
Phone: 520-203-6892
Research & Collaboration Committee

Marie Pearthree received her MS (1982) in Geosciences from the University of Arizona. She recently retired as the Deputy General Manager of the Central Arizona Project (CAP). Marie's experience also includes working as Deputy Director of the City of Tucson Water Department.

Mr. John M. Pekala 
2111 East Highland Avenue
Suite 402
Phoenix, AZ 85016 
Phone: 602-734-7710
Fax: 602-734-7701
Education & Outreach Committee

John Pekala received his BS in Geosciences from the University of Arizona in 1993 and his MS in Geology (Coastal Sedimentology and Stratigraphy) in 1996.

John is a Principal at Ramboll in Phoenix, AZ and a registered Professional Geologist in Arizona and California, with more than 20 years of experience in environmental consulting.  His work has included implementing sediment, soil, and water quality investigations, management of water quality monitoring programs, performing environmental due diligence and compliance reviews, evaluating environmental issues for Brownfield redevelopment project sites, evaluation and selection of remedial alternatives, conducting site remediation activities, and providing consulting support for environmental litigation cases. 

John joined the Department of Geosciences Advisory Board in 2011.

Dr. Kenneth Ridgway
Department of Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences
Purdue University
Research & Collaboration Committee
Kenneth Ridgway received his PhD in geological sciences from the University of Rochester in 1992, and is currently a Professor in the Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at Purdue University.
Dr. Simone Runyon
Assistant Professor
Geology and Geophysics
University of Wyoming
Research & Collaboration Committee

Simone Runyon received her MS and PhD in Geosciences from the University of Arizona in 2013 and 2017 respectively.

Simone is currently an Assistant Professor at the University of Wyoming and is researching economic geology and the study of hydrothermal systems.

Dr. Marc L. Sbar
University of Arizona
Adjunct Professor, global seismology 
Phone: 281-804-8912
Education & Outreach Committee

Marc Sbar received his PhD in earthquake seismology from Columbia University in 1972. He served on the faculty of the University of Arizona Department of Geosciences from 1977 - 1983. In 1983, he changed gears and became an exploration seismologist working for BP and ConocoPhillips. Marc currently works as a consultant in geophysical analysis solving interesting and challenging problems in predicting reservoir properties.

Marc has served on the Department of Geosciences Advisory Board since 2008.

Dr. Moira Smith
VP of Exploration and Geoscience
Liberty Gold Corp
Research & Collaboration Committee

Moira Smith received her PhD in Geology from the University of Arizona in 1990 and is a P.Geo. (British Columbia). She has held board or executive positions with numerous industry associations and is currently president of the Society of Economic Geologists and a recent winner of the Colin Spence award from the Association for Mineral Exploration of B.C. Dr. Smith is also a director of Discovery Metals Corp.

Dr. Smith is the VP of Exploration and Geoscience for Liberty Gold Corp, with development properties in Idaho, Utah, and Turkey.

Formerly Chief Geologist, Nevada for Fronteer Gold, Dr. Smith was instrumental in the successful advancement of Long Canyon, now an operating gold mine in Nevada. She developed an understanding of the geology and controls on mineralization at Long Canyon and built the geological model for ongoing exploration and resource growth. Prior to Fronteer Gold, she managed exploration programs for Teck on several high-profile, advanced-stage gold and copper-gold projects (now operating mines) throughout the Americas, including the Pogo gold deposit in Alaska, the Cobre Panama Cu-Mo-Au porphyry deposit in Panama, and the El Limon gold deposit in Mexico.

Dr. Kelly West
Deputy Director
UN Environment Programme Science Division
Nairobi, Kenya
Research & Collaboration Committee

Kelly West received her MS in Geosciences from the University of Arizona and her PhD in Geology from the University of California at Los Angeles. She has 20 years of experience in developing, implementing and supporting Global Environment Facility and other environmental projects for UN Environment, IUCN, UNDP and the Natural Resources Institute in the UK. Much of her professional work has been linked to the science and management of aquatic systems in East Africa. 

Kelly currently serves as the Deputy Director of the UN Environment Programme Science Division.

Dr. Mark Zoback
Stanford University
Stanford, California

Research & Collaboration Committee

Mark Zoback received his BS in geophysics from the University of Arizona in 1969, and his MS (73) and PhD (75) from Stanford University. 

Mark is currently the Benjamin M. Page Professor of Geophysics and the Director of the Stanford Natural Gas Initiative at Stanford University. He also co-directs SCITS Stanford Center for Induced and Triggered Seismicity (SCITS) and the Stanford Center for Carbon Storage (SCCS).