Mr. Fawthrop has served on the Board since October 2014 and as the Chairman of the Board since December 2015. Mr. Fawthrop has deep and broad-based experience in the oil and gas industry, including in West Africa, having served for 37 years with Unocal Corporation and Chevron Corporation (following its acquisition of Unocal in 2005) in a vast number of international leadership positions. Most recently, from January 2009 until his retirement in 2014, Mr. Fawthrop served as Chairman and Managing Director for Chevron Nigeria. Prior to his assignment in Nigeria, Mr. Fawthrop served as President and Managing Director for Unocal/Chevron Bangladesh from 2003 until 2007.
In his professional career, Mr. Fawthrop held various positions of increasing responsibility for exploration activities around the world in geographies including China, Egypt, Indonesia, South America, Africa, Latin America, and Europe. Mr. Fawthrop served as a Member of the Advisory Board of Eurasia Group. He served as a Director of Hindustan Oil Exploration Co. Ltd. from 2003 to 2005. He was an active member of the United States Azerbaijan Chamber of Commerce, the Asia Society of Texas and the Houston World Affairs Council.
Mr. Fawthrop holds a Bachelor of Science in Geology and Chemistry and a Masters degree in Marine Geology from the University of London.
Chief Executive Officer and Director
George Maxwell joined the Board in June 2020. Mr. Maxwell has over 25 years of experience in the oil and gas industry, including in both the producing and service/manufacturing arenas. Mr. Maxwell founded Eland Oil & Gas Plc. in 2009 and served as the company’s Chief Executive Officer from September 2014 to December 2019, Chief Financial Officer from 2010 to 2014, and as a member of the board of directors from 2009 to 2019, until the company was acquired by Seplat Petroleum Development Company Pls. on December 17, 2019. Prior to founding Eland Oil & Gas Plc., Mr. Maxwell served as the business development manager for Addax Petroleum and, prior to this, commercial manager in Geneva. Mr. Maxwell joined Addax Petroleum in 2004 and held the general manager position in Nigeria, where he was responsible for finance, and fiscal and commercial activities. Prior to this, Mr. Maxwell worked with ABB Oil & Gas as vice president of finance based in the UK with responsibilities for Europe and Africa. He held a similar position in Houston, from where the organization ran its operations in ten countries. George was finance director in Singapore for Asia Pacific and Middle East, handling currency swaps and minimizing exposures during the Asian financial crisis of the late 1990s. Mr. Maxwell graduated from Robert Gordon University in Aberdeen with a Masters in Business Administration. George is a Fellow of the Energy Institute in the UK and has formerly served on the boards of directors of Elcrest Exploration and Production Nigeria Ltd. and Westport Oil Limited.
Mr. Maxwell’s significant experience serving in executive leadership positions and on the boards of E&P companies, as well as his experience in M&A and strong ties to the London investment community, are expected to provide invaluable insight, making him an important resource for the Board.
Edward LaFehr was appointed to TransGlobe Energy’s Board of Directors in March 2019. He joined VAALCO’s Board following the combination with VAALCO in October 2022. Mr. LaFehr retired from Baytex Energy Corporation in January of 2023 after serving 6 years as President and Chief Executive Officer. Mr. LaFehr has 40 years of experience in the energy industry working with Amoco, BP, Talisman, TAQA and Baytex, holding senior positions in North American, European and Middle Eastern regions. Prior to joining Baytex, he was President of TAQA's North American energy business and subsequently Chief Operating Officer for TAQA, globally. Prior to this, he served as Senior Vice President for Talisman Energy. From 2009 to 2011 Mr. LaFehr was Managing Director of Pharaonic Petroleum Company in Cairo, Egypt. He also served on BP Egypt's executive team and represented BP's interests on the Board of Directors of the Pharaonic JV as well as ENI's Petrobel JV with the Egyptian Government. Mr. LaFehr holds Masters degrees in geophysics and mineral economics from Stanford University and the Colorado School of Mines, respectively.
Fabrice Nze-Bekale joined the Board in January 2022. Mr. Nze-Bekale has over 25 years of experience in mining, banking, telecoms, M&A and international finance. Mr. Nze-Bekale has served on numerous boards and as a senior executive across his career. He currently serves as an independent director on the Board of Orabank Gabon, where he is also the Chairman of the Audit Committee and serves on the Risk Committee. From 2012 to 2020, he was a member of the Board of the Fonds Gabonais D’Investissements Strategiques, Gabon’s sovereign wealth fund.
Since 2017 Mr. Nze-Bekale has served as Chief Executive Officer of ACT Afrique based in Dakar, Senegal, providing strategic advisory and investment banking expertise to governments as well as to public and private entities in West Africa. Prior to joining ACT Afrique, he served as Chief Executive Officer of Societe Equatoriale Des Mines, and prior to that, he was Director of Investment Banking for Standard Bank PLC based in London from 2008 to 2011.
Mr. Nze-Bekale is a Gabonese national and holds a Master’s Degree in Finance and Financial Engineering from the University of Paris-Dauphine (France) with an MBA from the London Business School (UK).
Ms. Stubbs has served on the Board since June 2020. Ms. Stubbs has over 30 years of experience in the energy industry, most recently serving 17 years with Aspire Holdings, LLC (formerly Endeavour International Corporation), an independent international oil and gas exploration and production company focused in the North Sea and U.S. Ms. Stubbs held numerous roles at Aspire Holdings, LLC, including director and President and Chief Financial Officer from 2015 to 2021, Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer from 2013 to 2015, Vice President, Finance and Treasury, and other Corporate Development and Accounting roles from 2004 to 2013.
Prior to joining Aspire Holdings, LLC she served as Assistant Controller, Financial Reporting and Corporate Accounting at Devon Energy, Inc. (formerly Ocean Energy, Inc.) from 1997 to 2004. Ms. Stubbs began her career in public accounting with KPMG, an international audit and business strategy consulting firm, where she rose to the title of Audit Manager. Ms. Stubbs is a Certified Public Accountant in the State of Texas and she currently serves on the board of directors of various charity and educational institutions. Ms. Stubbs holds a Bachelor of Business Administration and Master in Professional Accounting from the University of Texas at Austin.
Ms. Stubbs’ significant experience in accounting, finance, risk management and her service in various director and executive roles are expected to provide a valuable resource to the Board.