Our Team

Oil and gas experts with a wealth of experience

Jeff Smith: Geological Engineer & Petroleum Consultant

Jeff Smith
Geological Engineer & Petroleum Consultant

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A four-decade veteran of the petroleum industry, Jeff Smith has supervised several thousand new wells and reworks during his long career. As manager, he was instrumental in the growth of Stream Energy, Inc., leading it to become one of the most successful independents in California. Following his time with Stream, he has purchased/sold several projects, and continues as a consultant and expert court witness for oil and gas cases. Over the past 12 years, Jeff’s company Maranatha Petroleum, Inc., has reviewed over 50 known leases and drilled (or reworked) 100 wells from underdeveloped reserves. Maranatha continues to provide evaluation, cost estimating, drilling, completion and operations to develop under-performing reserves throughout the state of California. In a rapidly fluctuating industry, Jeff Smith’s decades of experience and successful track record sets him apart from his peers.

Jeff began his career in 1969 as a geologist with Union Oil Company in Bakersfield, California. After learning lease drilling and operations at an Independent Oil and Gas Operation, his interest in operations led him to form Maranatha in the late 1970s, where he learned drilling, completions, and operations management. Under the Maranatha banner he has served as a personal business consultant and completions expert with Chevron, Exxon, and Shell, contract-operating several hundred wells for partners and investors.

In 1987, the Oklahoma-based oil company, Stream Energy, Inc., hired Jeff to manage its West Coast Operations. In this capacity, Jeff supervised oil and gas projects throughout California’s Central Valley, an oil-rich area that may soon allow California to surpass Texas in oil production. Jeff’s focus on drilling and completing underdeveloped fields or leases resulted a 270x rise in oil production and a 75x improvement in natural gas production, making Stream Energy one of California’s most successful independents. After leaving Stream, Jeff became president of Site Resources, Inc., another independent oil and gas producer, and continues to operate 150 acres of minerals and wells through Maranatha Petroleum.

In addition to his field work, Jeff spent 20 years as a board member for the California Independent Petroleum Association, representing independent crude oil and natural gas producers in front of California and Washington politicians and policy makers. He has made numerous trips to Washington, D.C. representing the Oil and Gas Business. During that time, he also founded and served as president of the Natural Gas Producers COOP. In its battle against PG&E, the Coop saved producers as much as $500 million in cost reductions thanks to Jeff’s advocacy on behalf of natural gas transportation. Jeff is a current member of the Natural Gas Producers Association.

A long-time family man who has been married almost as long as he’s been in the oil and gas business, Jeff is the loving father of three boys and an active member of Laurelglen Bible Church. ‘Maranatha,’ according to 1 Corinthians 16:22, is the foundational substance of his faith and hope.

Jeff with a team of geologists on a 2013 tour of eastern California’s White Mountains, led by famed geophysics and geology researcher Tanya Atwater.
An outdoor enthusiast, Jeff explores the dramatic rock formations of Arizona’s Antelope Canyon in 2012.
Expertise includes:

  • Petroleum consulting
  • Geological engineering
  • Petroleum industry expert witness
  • Drilling, completion, and operations management
  • Investor relations
  • Field and lease development
  • Exploration
  • Property and well site evaluations

Consultant Team:


More than 40 years experience specializing in 2D and 3D interpretation, exploration and development geology, complex field interpretation, and prospecting of development fields.

  • Designed and supervised acquisition of 2D and 3D seismic program of interpretation objectives internationally in Siberia, South China Sea, People’s Republic of China and Venezuela.
  • Experience developing new fields throughout California, Utah, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama since 1975
  • B.A. cum laude, Geology from Vanderbilt University

A California oil and gas specialist with more than 50 years experience in developmental geology/engineering, expert well interpretation, and well drilling field studies with a gift for analysis and creative ideas.

  • Increased oil and gas production 40% and raised property value over $10,000,000 over three-year development (South Cuyama Unit)
  • Discovered three million barrels of new oil, helped drill and complete new wells in the Stevens Sands of the Canfield Ranch Oil Field, and completed several complex geological studies of the Fruitvale Oil Field
  • Instrumental lead in understanding and finding new gas revenues in Todhunters Lake, Willow Slough, Merritt and Vernalis Gas Fields in northern California
Accounting & Reporting Specialist

Nearly 40 years experience operations reporting for oil and gas industries, expert accounting and production-reporting specialist for joint ventures, partnerships, and LLCs. Administrative manager and project analyst with years of expertise related to multi-site payroll, local agency permitting, royalty and vendor payments, COPAS and AAPL.

  • Separate audits discovered 0.99999% accuracy in $30 million of receivables on oil and gas projects, with no underpaid distributions
  • Notary public and familiarity with regulatory agencies and CEQA
  • Responsible for monthly accounting, shipments, and reporting totaling at least $300K
Land Man &
Project Analyst

Since 2007, experience in land acquisition, title and chain of title assessments, lease operations, cash flow, budgeting and profit/loss assessments for oil and gas ventures.

  • Financial assets management, analysis and management of oil and natural gas assets
  • Over past three years, administered investment of $400K into land leasing
  • Field operations oversight in Kern County, resulting in 100 BOPD increase
  • Forecasting of new project investment, budgeting and general business modeling for new clients and projects
Exploration & Production Attorney

Oil and gas law expert with 30-plus years of contracts and agreements for oil and gas exploration and production. Specialist in contract negotiations and drafting JV agreements and oil and gas title documents.

  • Former Chief Counsel for upstream operations for ARCO (a Fortune 500 Oil and Gas Company) and BP
  • Exploration and production attorney for ARCO’s California operations
  • Chief Counsel of THUMS Long Beach Company