Mark Nechodom, PhD

Senior Director for Science and Technology
Western States Petroleum Association

Mark Nechodom joined WSPA in August 2020, and serves as Senior Director for Science & Technology.  In this role, Mark helps to integrate advocacy and regulatory response on production issues for the organization. His duties also include staff lead on research, scientific studies, and tracking emerging energy technologies as the industry transitions to a lower-carbon future. As a former regulator of the oil and gas industry, Mark served as the Director of the California Department of Conservation under Governor Jerry Brown, and oversaw the activities of the Division of Oil, Gas and Geothermal Resources, now named the California Geologic Energy Management division (CalGEM). His familiarity with oil and gas operations, as well as his experiences as a senior official in both state and federal government, bring a practical and policy-rich perspective to the energy industry.

Prior to joining WSPA, Mark was the Deputy Director of Montana’s state Department of Agriculture, overseeing four bureaus and laboratories, and more than two dozen regulatory and science programs. His previous experience working for the US Department of Agriculture in the Bush and Obama administrations gave him opportunities to work across the globe on cutting-edge issues in energy, climate and environmental markets, such as cap-and-trade and other market solutions to environmental challenges.

Mark holds a doctorate degree in political science from the University of California, Santa Cruz. He has an amateur’s passion for geology and earth sciences, and is an avid skier, kayak racer, backpacker, and motorcycle traveler.