Dean C. Rietz (MSPETE ’92, MHM ’94) P.E., president and member of the board of directors at Ryder Scott Company, has over 30 years of diverse experience in evaluating oil and gas properties, including more than 25 years applying numerical modeling approaches to these evaluations.
Prior to joining Ryder Scott Company, Rietz worked at Chevron and Golden/Gruy constructing simulation models to evaluate and forecast primary, secondary and enhanced oil recovery projects. At Ryder Scott, Rietz was instrumental in creating a stand-alone reservoir modeling group, enabling the company to expand and offer services beyond reserves evaluations in a more deliberate way. As part of the reservoir studies conducted while at Ryder Scott, complex models were constructed and history matched, including highly volatile and near critical fluids, thermal models and unconventional shale wells. He managed and grew this innovative group from the ground up for 15 years, after which he was promoted to executive vice president and then, in 2015, president.
Rietz is recognized by his peers to be highly knowledgeable regarding numerical reservoir simulation and, in particular, its relation to reserves evaluation. With the help of his colleagues, he has prepared and presented various Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE) papers focusing on topics such as reserves and reservoir modeling, evaluation of model history matches and numerical modeling in general.
Recent work not related to numerical simulation, in collaboration with colleagues at Ryder Scott and Dr. John Lee, involves the development of a new empirically-based analytical equation for improved modeling and forecasting of shale/tight sand/unconventional wells. This work has resulted in publications in SPE and the Journal of Natural Gas Science & Engineering.
Rietz has not only excelled in his career, but he has also given back by teaching in various facets in the industry. In 1999, as manager of the simulation group at Ryder Scott, Rietz spearheaded development of a two-day school on the practical aspects of reservoir simulation. This school is now being conducted by Rietz and a colleague on behalf of the SPE continuing education/professional development. Around the same time, the University of Houston expressed an interest to have Rietz spread his reservoir simulation knowledge in the form of a graduate-level course. He developed and has been teaching “Applied Reservoir Simulation” to master’s students in the petroleum engineering department at UH for well over 15 years.
Not only has Rietz been an adjunct professor at the UH Cullen College, he was also one of the founding members of the Petroleum Engineering Advisory Board. As a member of the board, he was directly involved with establishing the petroleum engineering department (including undergraduate, master’s and doctoral programs); since then, the undergraduate program has received its ABET accreditation and is one of the larger programs in the country. Rietz was recently nominated to serve as the chair of the Petroleum Advisory Board.
From 2006 to 2008, Rietz served on the Journal of Petroleum Technology Editorial Review Committee — Reserves Asset Management. He has been a guest speaker for the SPE, American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG), Society of Petroleum Evaluation Engineers (SPEE), Society of Petroleum Resources Economists (SPRE) and various E&P company internal presentations.
Among his achievements, Rietz was nominated and chosen as a Distinguished Lecturer for the SPE in the 2016-2017 tour season. That effort resulted in traveling the world presenting on the topic of incorporating reservoir modeling results into the reserves process.
Rietz received his bachelor’s degree in petroleum engineering from the University of Oklahoma in 1984, followed by his master’s degree in petroleum engineering from the University of Houston in 1992 and an M.H.M degree from the UH Hilton College in 1994.