As Executive Director, President and Chief Executive Officer, Todd A. Brooks overseas all aspects of ZaZa’s daily operations, including exploration, production, finance, capital markets activities, business development, engineering, and land management. Mr. Brooks is a co-founder of ZaZa Energy, and under his direction, the company entered into a Joint Eagle Ford Shale Exploration and Development Agreement with the Hess Corporation in May of 2010, acquired 100K+ acres in the Eagle Ford, drilled 30 wells in 2011 in the Eagle Ford, acquired 100K acres in the Eaglebine in 2011-2012, executed a JV with Range Resources in the Eaglebine/Eagle Ford East Play, successfully went public in 2012, and is currently traded on the NASDAQ exchange. In 2013 ZaZa entered into an Eaglebine/Eagle Ford East Joint Exploration and Development Agreement with a world class operator and has executed multiple PSA’s on its Eagle Ford West Assets as the company focuses on the Eaglebine/Eagle Ford East Resource Play.
Mr. Brooks is an experienced energy investor and a fifth-generation Texan. He brings substantial knowledge to his leadership of ZaZa derived from repeated and widely varied contract executions while carrying out senior roles in asset evaluation, capital markets, and the acquisition of oil and gas leases in various resource plays. Prior to founding ZaZa Energy, Mr. Brooks served as trustee of his family's mineral trusts, which have had continuous production since the early 1940's. In that role, he evaluated energy and mineral opportunities and made strategic investments reinvesting cash flow across multiple geographic regions. Prior to this, Mr. Brooks worked in the field for Houston-based OGM Land Company, where he delivered title work and negotiated oil and gas leases on behalf of OGM's clients. From 2000 to 2003, Mr. Brooks was a Production Analyst for L.J. Melody and Co., a Houston-based investment bank.
Mr. Brooks graduated from Vanderbilt University in 1997 with a degree in Economics, and earned a Doctor of Jurisprudence from South Texas College of Law in 2000. He belongs to a number of industry groups including the Society of Petroleum Engineers, the Houston Producers' Forum and the Independent Producers Association of America. He has also served on the Board of the Houston Museum of Printing History, and supports numerous local and statewide nonprofit organizations.
Mr. Burris brings an extensive, distinguished history to ZaZa Energy Corporation's Board of Directors. His tenure as a Director for numerous enterprises in both the financial and oilfield services industries provides him with expertise and insight of great value to ZaZa management.
From April 2008 to the present day, Mr. Burris has been a Director of Forbes Energy Services, an oilfield services company for which he serves as a member of the Audit Committee and as the Chairman of the Compensation Committee for its Board of Directors. Mr. Burris is also the Chairman of the Board for several private companies, including: Agrow Credit Corporation. Inc., where he has been a Director since 1995; a secured consumer loan and credit facility, where he has been a Director since 2000; Producers Ag Finance where he has been the Director since 2001; and Resonant Finance, where he has been a Director since 2007.
Also of note is Mr. Burris' past service on various other Boards of Directors, including the following positions: service as the Chairman of the Board of Falfurrias State Bank from 2001 to 2010, as a director of Mesquite Helicopter Service, Inc. from 1994 to 2008, and from 1990 to 2007, as the founder and Chairman of the Board of Alice Loan Company, a real estate development company.
A graduate of Texas A&M University, Mr. Burris earned a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in Finance in 1983.
Since co-founding ZaZa Energy in 2009 with Todd Brooks and Gaston Kearby, Mr. Hearn has managed ZaZa's technical team and evaluated drilling efforts during the development of the Company's acreage in the Eagle Ford Shale.
A second generation Texas geologist, Mr. Hearn brings more than thirty years experience in the analysis of geological and geophysical data in the oil and gas industry to the ZaZa leadership team.
Mr. Hearn launched his career with a position at Texas Oil & Gas (TXO) as a staff Geologist, and then as a member of its Major Play Exploration Team. In 1991, following his tenure with TXO, Mr. Hearn founded and became President of LARA Energy, Inc., for which he was involved in all aspects of its business, including: reservoir analysis, drilling and production engineering, legal and land management.
After his founding of LARA Energy, Inc., Mr. Hearn capitalized on several opportunities throughout South Texas where he generated and marketed numerous exploration projects. In addition to leading his own drilling and development operations, he has served as an independent, third party consultant for several oil and gas exploration companies.
Mr. Hearn received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Geology in 1980 from the University of Houston.
Founded Omega Energy Corp. in 1988 and today serves as its President and Chief Executive Officer. Omega is a privately held, Corpus Christi based oil and gas company that owns a portfolio of interests in operated and non-operated oil & gas properties.
Mr. Kearby began his career in the oil and gas industry in 1984, buying and selling drilling pipe to oil well operators in South Texas. Over time his business expanded to include capping, salvaging, and reselling drilling pipe reclaimed from unproductive wells, as well as purchasing and operating existing wells. In 2009, Mr. Kearby founded ZaZa with Todd A. Brooks and John Hearn Jr. to pursue opportunities in the emerging Eagle Ford Shale.
While Mr. Kearby's experience has been primarily focused in oil and gas operations in South Texas, his experience includes oversight of production operations spanning a large part of North America. Mr. Kearby’s depth of experience in evaluating, acquiring, enhancing, and operating existing production wells will be of value to the board of the new ZaZa Energy Corporation.
A. Haag Sherman brings an extensive history of successful investment, financial services and energy leadership to ZaZa Energy Corporation's Board of Directors.
As Co-Founder, Vice Chairman and Partner of Salient Partners, L.P., Mr. Sherman has been responsible for developing most of Salient's investment programs, including approximately $2 billion invested in the energy complex. Under his leadership, Salient grew from $200 million in client assets in 2002 to more than $16 billion in 2012, successfully launched an E&P fund, and started the first hedged and tax advantaged closed end funds of MLPs (NYSE listed), for which Mr. Sherman developed key relationships with many of the smaller investment banks covering MLPs. He has served Salient in numerous capacities, including tenures as both Chief Executive Officer and Chief Investment Officer.
Previously, Mr. Sherman was a Partner and Executive Officer of Redstone where he focused on private equity investments and alternative investments from 1998 to 2002, and co-founded a production payment business for small E&P companies to gain liquidity.
From 1996 to 1998, Mr. Sherman was employed at PaineWebber, Inc., as a part of its Redstone Consulting wealth advisory group. Mr. Sherman began his career with Price Waterhouse, and also practiced corporate law for Akin, Gump, Strauss, Hauer, & Feld LLP, where he represented a significant portion of each firms' energy clientele.
In 2012, Mr. Sherman co-founded Bigfoot Energy Services LLC, which recorded its first profitable month only three months after launch.
In addition to ZaZa Energy Corporation, A. Haag Sherman serves as a Board Director for Hilltop Corporation, Blue Dolphin Energy Company, Salient MLP & Energy Infrastructure, and Salient Midstream & MLP Fund.
Mr. Sherman earned his Juris Doctor from the University of Texas School of Law, where he graduated with honors. He is also a cum laude graduate of Baylor University, a certified public accountant and a member of the State Bar of Texas.
Mr. Sherman is author of Shattering Orthodoxies: An Economic and Foreign Policy Blueprint for America. It outlines the causes of the current economic crisis and provides an integrated plan to address the crisis. The book reached no. 6 among Social Policy books on Amazon.com.
Herbert Williamson III serves as a Director and Chairman of the Board of ZaZa Energy Corporation. A private investor with significant oil and gas expertise, Mr. Williamson brings a wealth of multinational experience in finance, investment banking and general management to the ZaZa Energy Corporation Board of Directors.
From July 2001 to June 2002, he was a part-time consultant to Petrie Parkman & Company for new business development. From April 1999 through July 2001 he was a Director and Interim Chief Financial Officer of Merlon Petroleum Company. From October 1998 through April 1999 he was a Director and Chief Financial Officer of Seven Seas Petroleum. From 1995 through 1998 he was a Director in the Energy Group of Credit Suisse. From 1985 until 1995, he was Vice Chairman and Executive Vice President at Parker & Parsley Petroleum Company.
Mr. Williamson holds an MBA degree from Harvard Business School (1977) and a BA degree from Ohio Wesleyan University (1970). He also serves as a Director of Merlon International, a private, oil and gas exploration company with primary operations in onshore Egypt, and as a director of Eagle Rock Energy Partners, LLC (EROC, NASDAQ), a domestic U.S. midstream and upstream oil and gas company.