Lee appointed to NRC Committee on Understanding the Impact of Selling the U.S. Helium Reserve

May 21, 2008

COLLEGE STATION, Texas - Dr. W. John Lee, Regents Professor and holder of the L.F. Peterson Endowed Chair in the Harold Vance Department of Petroleum Engineering, has been appointed to serve on the National Research Council Committee on Understanding the Impact of Selling the U.S. Helium Reserve. The committee operates under the direction of the Board on Physics and Astronomy (BPA) and the National Materials Advisory Board (NMAB) of the National Research Council's (NRC) Division on Engineering and Physical Sciences. The committee will assess the impact of selling the Federal Helium Reserve as well as examine the availability and reliability of worldwide helium supply, technical opportunities to increase the supply and the relationships among supply, demand, and market price. Additionally, the committee will assess the current and projected helium marketplace; assess the role that organizational and financial factors play in meeting the goals of the Federal Helium Program; and identify measure that would enable the Program to respond more effectively to the dynamics of the helium industry. Lee's term on the committee will end in June 2009. "I am honored and excited to have this opportunity to serve again as a member of a National Research Council Committee," Lee said. "This committee will be studying an issue of great importance to a segment of the scientific and engineering community in the country and ultimately of importance to the public as a whole." Lee, who holds a joint appointment with the Texas Engineering Experiment Station (TEES), came to Texas A&M in 1977 and was the initial director of the Petroleum Engineering Department's distance learning program. In November of 2007, he was appointed Academic Engineering Fellow by the Securities and Exchange Commission's Division of Corporation Finance, where he works on various issues related to the disclosure of oil and gas reserves. Lee's areas of specialization include oil and gas reserves estimation procedures and unconventional resources. Lee previously worked for Exxon where he focused on integrated reservoir studies and headed Exxon's major fields study group. He also worked with S.A. Holditch & Associates, Inc., and retired in 1999 after serving as executive vice president. He has been a member of the Society of Petroleum Engineers for 46 years and has held numerous positions including membership on the Board of Directors. Lee holds bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees in chemical engineering from Georgia Tech.

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