UOG 2015

UOG 2015 Key Speakers and Panelists:

Dr. Yuval Steinitz was born in Israel in 1958. He completed his IDF service in the Golani Brigade and served as a reservist in the Alexandroni Brigade. He holds a B.A. and M.A. (with honors) in Philosophy from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, and a Ph.D. in Philosophy from Tel Aviv University. He received the Alon Prize for Ph.D. Students in 1993. He is married and the father of three children. Steinitz was a Senior Lecturer in the Philosophy Department at Haifa University. He served as President of the Association for the Public's Right to Know (1999-2004). A Member of Knesset since 1999, Steinitz has served as member and chairman of the Foreign Affairs & Defense Committee, and as member of the Constitution, Law and Justice, and the Science and Technology Committees. He chaired the Committee for the Examination of the Intelligence Services Following the War in Iraq as well as the Parliamentary Inquiry Committee for the Events that Took Place in Amona. Since 2003 he has co-chaired the Joint Congress-Knesset Security Committee, together with Senator John Kyl (Arizona). Yuval Steinitz was appointed Minister of Finance in March 2009, serving until March 2013, when he was appointed Minister of Strategic and Intelligence Affairs responsible for International Relations. In May 2015 he was appointed Minister of National Infrastructure, Energy, and Water, and has the responsibility of developing Israel’s oil & gas industry.

Tim Crome
Tim Crome has 35 years of experience in the offshore pipeline industry. He joined Technip in 1997 in Norway and is now the Vice President for Subsea in the Mediterranean Region. Until the end of 2014 he was Director for Sales and Business Development for the Technip operation in Norway. He was previously Engineering Manager for the Oslo office from 2001 until 2007, during which time he was also the representative for Technip on the DNV Pipeline Committee. He is on the conference committees for the annual Offshore Pipeline Technology Conference, held in Amsterdam, Netherlands, and the Underwater Technology Conference held in Bergen, Norway. Tim graduated with an honours degree in Civil Engineering from Imperial Collage, London, in 1980 and immediately started working with pipeline design as one of the first graduate engineers employed by JPKenny. In 1984 he was seconded to Oslo to work for Norsk Hydro on the Oseberg project and has been in Norway ever since! Tim has lived in the Oslo region, working on subsea and pipeline related projects for Det Norske Veritas, Norsk Hydro and Offshore Design, prior to joining Technip.
John Katok
John joined Aker Solutions in January, 2013, as Senior Vice President of Strategy, Technical Sales and Marketing for the North America Region. Prior to Aker Solutions, John held two positions at the same time with Willbros, those being SVP International Operations , as well as SVP Upstream Strategy, Sales and Marketing, the later added to his role as Willbros’ strategy shifted to North America and operations expanded into all the US shale oil and gas areas including the Eagle Ford, Marcellus and Bakken. Prior to Willbros John was with Global Industries for two years as the Business Unit Vice President of Middle East and North Africa/Mediterranean Region and later as Senior Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer worldwide included management of the company’s entrance into the deepwater market and construction oversight of two state-of-the art deepwater derrick/pipe lay vessels and worldwide Business Development. He was a member of the Executive Team. John’s experience also included six years as Vice President for Technip from 2002 to 2008 where he was responsible for acquiring and sponsoring deep water and downstream projects, as well as enhancing the company’s strategic client relationships worldwide. John’s 37 years of oil and gas experience began in 1978 with Brown & Root Marine, later known as Halliburton Brown & Root and  then KBR, serving over 25 years on a variety of large offshore projects,  including engineering, manufacturing, fabrication, installation and hook-up & commissioning operations. He was promoted to executive level positions in corporate business development the last four years as Commercial Vice President covering strategic client account management of all key clients contracting across Halliburton Energy Services, Landmark Graphics and KBR upstream business units. John was born and raised near Ocean City, New Jersey, graduated with a B.Sc in Civil Engineering from WVU-Institute of Technology in 1978,  is married with two sons and two grand-daughters, and enjoys every type of hunting and fishing, shooting sporting clays and playing golf.
Bini Zomer
Binyamin Zomer was appointed to Noble Energy Country Manager in Israel in September 2014. Prior to that, he served as Noble Energy's Director of Corporate Affairs in Israel since January 2010. In that capacity, Bini was responsible for Noble's government relations, media relations and corporate social responsibility projects. His responsibilities also include a number of commercial endeavors. In 2014, Bini added the role of Joint Venture Manager to his responsibilities. As JV Manager, Bini is responsible managing the business relationship between the various partnerships that Noble operates off-shore Israel. Prior to joining Noble, Bini served as Deputy Director for Policy and Government Affairs at the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) where he focused on energy and homeland security issues. Before joining AIPAC, Bini was Director of Federal Government Relations at Accenture LLP and before that served as Counsel to Don Nickles, US Senator from Oklahoma, after practicing law in Chicago. Bini has a Law degree from the Washington University School of Law in St. Louis and a B.A. in Government from the University of Texas. Bini and his wife, Heather, made Aliyah in 2010 and reside in Modi’in with their four daughters.
Mark Guest
20 August 2012 Ambassador of Italy to the State of Israel
  • Born in La Spezia, August 16, 1958
  • Degree in Law Summa Cum Laude (University of Rome, July 19, 1982)
  • Enters Diplomatic Service on March 1st, 1984
2011 – 2012       Special Envoy of the Minister of Foreign Affairs for Afghanistan and Pakistan 2007 – 2011       Consul General in New York 2006 – 2007       Ministry of Foreign Affairs, General Directorate for American Countries, Director for South America 2005 – 2006       Prime Minister's Office, Deputy Diplomatic Advisor 2002 – 2005       Prime Minister's Office, First Counsellor (Diplomatic Advisor’s Staff) 2000 – 2002       Permanent Representation to the United Nations in New York, First Counselor 1998 – 2000       Permanent Representation to the United Nations in New York, Counselor 1997 – 1998       Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Office of Cabinet 1996 – 1997       Ministry of Foreign Affairs, General Secretariat 1995 – 1996       Task Force for the organization of the Italian Presidency of the EU 1995                   Embassy of Italy in Bonn, Counsellor for Economic Affairs 1991 – 1994       Embassy of Italy in Bonn, First Secretary for Economic Affairs 1988 – 1991       Embassy of Italy in Tokyo, First Secretary 1987 – 1988       Embassy of Italy in Tokyo, Second Secretary 1985 – 1987       Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Press and Information Service Lieutenant in reserve of the Carabinieri Corps Ambassador Talo’ is married and has three children

Harold Vinegar

Dr. Vinegar was previously Chief Scientist, Physics of Royal Dutch Shell. He is presently the Chief Scientist of Israel Energy Initiatives (IEI), Afek Israel Oil & Gas and Genie Oil & Gas. He holds MA and PHD degrees in physics from Harvard University and a BA in physics from Columbia. Harold joined Shell's Bellaire Research Centre in Houston, Texas in 1976. During his career at Shell, he had over 50 publications and 290 patents in the fields of shaly sand evaluation, X-ray CT, NMR well logging, microseismic imaging and wireless power and communications for intelligent oil wells.

He was co-inventor of the in situ thermal desorption process for soil remediation and was instrumental in the formation of TerraTherm Environmental Services, an affiliate of Shell Oil Co. created to commercialise the in situ thermal desorption process. Dr. Vinegar has had a career interest spanning over 35 years in applying novel recovery processes to unconventional resources. He is the co-inventor of the in situ conversion and upgrading processes (ICP and IUP) which have been piloted successfully in Colorado oil shale and Alberta oil sands. Harold served as President and VP Technology of the Society of Core Analysts (SCA). He received the Society of Petrophysicists (SPWLA) Distinguished Technical Achievement Award in 1992 and the Gold Medal for Lifetime Achievement in 2010.

He was elected Fellow of the American Physical Society (APS) in 1999, cited " for contributions to the science and technology of oil exploration and environmental remediation, particularly thermal methods for extracting hydrocarbons from the ground and for applications of NMR methods to well logging." He was inducted into the US national Academy of Engineering (NAE) in 2003 and served on the US National Research Council (NRC) Committee on Earth Resources.

Since retiring from Shell in October, 2008, Harold and his family fulfilled a lifelong dream and emigrated to Israel. He is Professor of Petroleum Geosciences at Ben Gurion University of the Negev where his research centres on making Israeli energy independent.

Gideon Tadmor
With over 20 years of extensive experience initiating and managing Exploration and Production projects worldwide, Gideon is the Chairman of Delek Drilling & CEO of Avner, positions he has held for the past 15 years. Gideon is one of the founders and major drivers behind the success of the Eastern Mediterranean oil & gas industry. Gideon led the successful development of the Yam Tethys project, Israel’s first producing natural gas reservoir discovered in 2000. Gideon continued to lead the development of the oil & gas sector in Israel with the extremely successful discovery & development of the Tamar natural gas field. Tamar has been producing natural gas since 2013 and will provide Israel with the majority of its natural gas needs over the next 20 years. In addition, the Companies under Gideon’s leadership are in the process of developing one of the world’s largest natural gas discoveries; Leviathan. Leviathan with 22 TCF of natural gas will transform the East Med region into a significant export hub over the next few years. Gideon has an L.LB, is a member of the Israel Bar Association and holds the rank of Major in the Israel Defense Force.

Yiftach Ron-Tal
Yiftach Ron-Tal is currently Chairman of the Board of Directors at Israel Electric Corporation. Israel Electric Corporation is the main generator, supplier, transmitter and distributer of electrical power in Israel. IEC owns and operates 17 power stations with 63 generating units: 18 steam-driven and 30 gas turbines, and the company’s installed capacity stood at 13,617 MW. The corporation employs 12,754 workers and provides service to 2.63million customers. Before Mr Ron-Tal’s position at IEC, he was Chairman of the Board at Israel Ports Development and Assets Company (IPC) between 2007 and 2010 and Commander in the IDF Ground Forces (2001-2005). Mr Ron-Tal is  member of the Israel Bar Association since 1994 (membership is restricted according to Section 52b of the Chamber of Advocates Law - 1961 due to non-occupation in the profession, between 1997-2002 and as of 2011). Military Rank: Major General (Res.). He was born in 1956 and graduated with an Executive M.B.A. from Bar-Ilan University in 2006, and obtained an LLB from The Faculty of Law at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem in 1991.
Mehmet Ogutcu

Mehmet has more than 30 years of successful track-record in development, investment, government, diplomacy, international organisations, and energy business.

Currently based in London, Mehmet serves as chairman of Global Resources Partnership, an independent non-executive director on the boards of Genel Energy plc and Yasar Group of Companies, and a special envoy for The Energy Charter in Brussels for MENA and Eurasia regions. He also leads the recently created Bosphorus Energy Club, an exclusive gathering of the senior executives and leaders in finance, energy and politics across Turkey, Eurasia, the Middle East and Africa.

He provides strategic advice to several major natural resources and finance corporations on business growth, investment deals, fund-raising, strategic stakeholder alignment, and risk mitigation.

In his early career, Mehmet worked as deputy inspector on the board of Is Bankasi, Turkey’s largest private bank, and undertook projects as NATO Research Fellow and EU’s Jean Monnet Fellow. He was a prominent diplomat, having worked on critical “economic diplomacy” dossiers in Ankara, Beijing, Brussels and Paris, and later as an advisor to the late Turkish Prime Minister, Turgut Ozal.

After leaving the foreign services in 1994, Mehmet joined as a senior staffer at the International Energy Agency heading Eurasia, Asia-Pacific and Latin America programme and the OECD in Paris as principal administrator managing international investment outreach over 11 years.

Mehmet was for six years (2005-2011) the global director for BG Group Plc. in the UK, managing high-level government engagements and new business development around the world. He also worked as the chairman of the International Advisory Board of Invensys plc until 2014.

He was most recently nominated by the Turkish government for the secretary-general position of the world’s largest energy organisation, International Energy Forum, based in Riyadh, and became one of the top two contenders. Mehmet is a graduate of Turkey’s “Mulkiye”, a symbol of the Republican meritocracy, similar to the French École nationale d’administration, London School of Economics (MSc) and College d’Europe (MA), Bruges.

He is an occasional lecturer at London School of Economics’ Enterprise Executive Programme, Harvard University, Dundee University, University of Reading and Peking University’s School of Government since 2005.

As part of The London Speakers Bureau he often speaks at key international and regional conferences around the world and writes in newspapers on future trends, development, investment/finance, energy/food/water nexus and geopolitical matters.

Mehmet is fluent in Turkish, English, French and Chinese (conversational).

Shlomo Alfia is a Senior Partner at EY Israel. He has 22 years of experience in providing audit, taxation and consulting services to Oil & Gas companies operating in Israel and abroad and assists them in creating their business models in Israel.

He has also accumulated vast experience in the energy field and has provided services to leading companies including: Avner Oil & Gas Exploration, Delek Drilling, Noble Energy, Woodside, Delek Energy Systems, Yam-Tatis Project, Tamar Project, Leviathan Project, ATP, Isramco Negev 2 LP, Modiin Energy LP, AGR, Lapidot, Israel Opportunity and others.

Shlomo is a graduate in Accounting & Economics and holds a BA Cum Laude in Social Sciences from The Open University. He became a Certified Public Accountant in 1991.


Tony Martin graduated from Imperial College, London, in 1990 with an Honours degree in Mechanical Engineering and a Master’s Degree in Petroleum Engineering. After leaving University, he spent the first 4 years of his career with Halliburton, but has spent the last 21 years working for Baker Hughes in Aberdeen, the Netherlands, Nigeria, Singapore, Indonesia, the USA, Italy and London. During this period he has been extensively involved in cementing, coiled tubing, sand control, acidizing and water control operations, but his main interest and experience has always been in hydraulic fracturing. During his career, Tony has been involved in fracturing projects in more than 50 countries all over the world. Tony is currently Baker Hughes’ Reservoir Development Services’ Director for Integrated Stimulation Expertise, for the Europe-Africa-Russia-Caspian Region. He is also a Baker Hughes Subject Matter Expert in Hydraulic Fracturing and Stimulation. In these roles, he travels extensively promoting fracturing and stimulation, and acting as a technical focal point for the company. He is the author or co-author of numerous technical papers and has served on the technical committees for several Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE) events. He is the author of Baker Hughes’ Hydraulic Fracturing Manual and co-editor of Modern Fracturing: Enhancing Natural Gas Production. Tony is a former SPE Distinguished Lecturer and is currently on the SPE Distinguished Lecturer Committee. In 2009 Tony received the SPE South, Central and East Europe Regional Technical Award for Production Operations. In 2015, Tony was elected a Distinguished Member of the SPE. Tony has been a UK Chartered Engineer since 1997 and is a member of the UK’s Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining.

UOG 2015 highlights video coming soon

Participants and attendees at last year’s groundbreaking conference included Noble Energy, Delek Drilling, Excelerate Energy, Aker Solutions, Edison, Avner Oil Exploration, BP, GE Oil & Gas, Israel Ministry of Energy, Israel Ministry of Economy,  Wood Group, IHS, Baker Hughes, UBS Wealth Management, Texas Railroad Commission and many more.

UOG 2015 in numbers

300+ delegates
130+ participating companies
38% Executive Management Level or above
30 countries represented
15+ hours dedicated networking time
35+ speakers


“Israel has achieved almost a revolution in the energy sector, and now Israel is on the way to becoming one of the main natural gas producers. At the conference someone said Israel used to be acountry of Milk and Honey; now it’s becoming an oil and gas country as well.”
Chairman, Independent Oil & Gas Company

“This conference has been a fantastic experience for me. I have confirmed a lot of the research about Israel here and it has brought light onto a lot of the data and context in oil and gas.”
CFO, Major Oil & Gas Company