2015 Industry Pioneer

R. DON VARDEMAN

Don Vardeman championed successive applications of spar technology for deepwater development, and by his leadership in deepwater mega projects has provided an important example for Project Management in the offshore oil & gas industry.  His untiring efforts in technology, academic and business societies, as well as his willingness to mentor colleagues and other young professionals have advanced the entire industry.

Vardeman has 40 years of experience in production engineering and operations. Graduating from Texas A&M University in 1975 with a B.S. in Electrical Engineering, he began his career with leadership roles in the development of deepwater fields utilizing spar technology that was first applied at the Neptune field. Vardeman led the project management teams for deepwater developments including the Nansen, Boomvang,  Gunnison, Red Hawk and Constitution spars, as well as the Independence Hub semi-submersible production facility.  Vardeman’s teams focused on the further use of spar technology, using teamwork, trusting relationships, and the transfer of learnings and knowledge from past to future projects.  Vardeman is responsible for eight (8) spar developments and three (3) successive generations of spar technology, while helping to develop tomorrow’s deepwater leaders.

In November 2005, Vardeman was named Commander of the Order of the Lion of Finland by the President of Finland for meritorious service to the maritime industry of Finland, where most spar hulls have been built.  Currently, he serves on the Engineering Advisory Council at Texas A&M University and formerly served as the Chairman of the Offshore Technology Conference.