Message from the President & CEO

Happy New Year

Happy new year to all our members and supporters. 2019 has been a transformative year for the Southern Gas Association. As 2019 draws to a close, I would sincerely like to thank our Board, our members, employees, and partners who have been an essential part of setting a positive course for SGA.
At SGA, we strive to put our members at the heart of everything we do. Because of your trust, support, and engagement that we were able to accomplish everything we did in 2019.

2020 promises to be an exciting year, and I’m looking forward to working with you all – as individuals, organizations, and experts. Together we can work on the best solutions to the challenges we will no doubt face as an industry.


2019 Top 5 Milestones


However, before we look forward to 2020, I would like to cover a few highlights from this year. The following is a selection of some of the many great things that have taken place in 2019. They will help propel SGA forward as the leading energy association, provider of technical training, professional development, peer-to-peer learning, conferences, and networking.

  1. Conferences and Training: SGA delivered 40 conference and training events to more than 4200 happy members and participants who earned nearly 58,000 professional development hours. From California to Texas to the Carolina’s to Virginia and many other places in between, we helped our members increase skills and share knowledge across the United States and Canada.
  2. Focus Groups: In July, at SGA’s Natural Gas Connect conference, members had the opportunity to participate in focus groups. These groups provided qualitative information on how members utilize their membership, which features of membership they value most, and what their experiences are like at our conferences and events. We are incorporating the insight gained from these meetings into the association 3-year strategic plan.
  3. Governance: The Board of Directors Planning Committee took on a comprehensive review of our By-Laws to ensure that SGA is in the strongest position to benefit members for years to come. Our member companies were invited to participate and then approve the revised by-laws, and they provided overwhelming support.
  4. Culture and Team: We know that success is a direct result of culture and team. In 2019 SGA invested in both – recruiting the best and brightest to lead member-focused initiatives in learning and professional development, sponsorship, member experience and volunteer engagement. Click the links below to meet the SGA leadership team.
    1. Nicolle Billmyre
    2. Lauren Callon
    3. Cindy Mitchell
    4. Telesa Walton
  5. Thought Leadership: SGA partnered with Adamantine Energy to bring three exclusive pieces on how members can mitigate social risk. Also related to helping members deal with challenges facing our industry – 21 member companies participated in a Joint Industry Project to create ten web-based training modules on subjects ranging from Hydraulic Fracturing to Climate Change to Renewable Energy. This effort was part of our Natural Gas Champions effort, and those web-based training modules are available for use in 2020.


2020 Initiatives


We are looking forward to 2020 with high expectations, and we will continue to maintain, and improve on, the professional, servant leadership, high service levels to all our members.

We appreciate the importance of our services to members. Networking, training, knowledge transfer, and innovation can help improve safety, customer service, commercial opportunity, and exchange of ideas. The SGA staff, supported by its members and guided by the Board, will work hard to ensure we remain the center of excellence, and knowledge, for the wider natural gas community. As part of that, we’ll be focusing on initiatives, in the coming year, including:

  • Building on the activities identified as ‘of great value to members’ in feedback from our recent Focus Groups. These include our popular events, which keep members up-to-date with the latest developments in natural gas (both technical and business) and provide excellent opportunities for professional networking.
  • Ensuring we continue to deliver the right services to meet the needs of existing members and to attract and engage new members across the United States and Canada.
  • Making sure that SGA remains a viable organization for our young professionals
  • Fostering leadership and professional development opportunities that will advance a diverse base of agile leaders for the industry of tomorrow including Women and Leadership and Emerging Leaders
  • Offering PSMS workshops to assist members on their path to implement RP1173 and Technical Guidelines, packed with the latest knowledge and best practices, that will help members operationalize PSMS.

While 2020 is not without challenges and threats to our industry, SGA has a great future. Our member companies and the association are strong and relevant. Natural gas is of eminent importance for our clean energy future. We see many opportunities ahead for our industry, including the rise of LNG exports and renewable natural gas. The increased availability of natural gas will continue to lower GHG emissions and provide the cleanest air in the last decade. Linking ideas and information has always been SGA’s priority. In 2020 we will continue to lead the way to advance the natural gas industry and industry professionals.

I’m very proud to be in the privileged position to lead SGA in this critical work and in continuing the excellent work of previous presidents. I wish you and your families a joyous, peaceful, and restful holiday and all the best for the New Year in 2020.


Suzanne Ogle
President & CEO Southern Gas Association (SGA)