Petrogenium. USA LLC

Headquartered in Houston, Texas, Petrogenium USA LLC represents the next phase of growth for Petrogenium. With president Paul Newman at the helm, our North America-based consultants are ready to tackle projects worldwide. 

Paul Newman


Paul has cross-functional capabilities and experience which will add value across a wide range of your customers’ businesses. He has a passion for Operational Excellence, HSE, and coaching and mentoring emerging talent. He has a hands-on approach to building trust and helping others grow and develop.

Paul has had a 40-year global career in refining and petrochemicals operational excellence, consultancy, commercial, and complex sales. He spent 35 of those years in Shell Downstream manufacturing leadership. Having served in an operational capacity for two decades as a refining/petrochemicals site manager, he can speak the language up and down the value chain.

After key positions in technical and operations management on large sites in Europe, Paul moved to a more of a strategic role in the leadership of Shell Global Solutions, Shell’s external consultancy.

More recently, he has worked as an external consultant for Bain & Co, Reliance Manufacturing Industries, and Head of Global Consulting Sales and Transformation for Yokogawa/KBC driving digital transformation for global clients.

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Jim Overman

Client Director

Jim is an accomplished business, operations, and implementation leader with 40 years’ experience in the downstream energy sector. He is passionate about leadership, execution discipline, results delivery, and strengthening organizational capability to improve operational performance and business outcomes.

Jim started his career as a plant support engineer before moving into operations management. He progressed to Refining Operations Superintendent then transitioning into refinery business management. Jim concluded his career with Shell as Vice President of Business Management for the Deer Park Refining Limited Partnership (DPRLP), a joint venture between Shell Oil Company and P.M.I. Norteamerica S.A. de C.V. (a subsidiary of PEMEX).

In addition to the roles above, Jim’s extensive downstream manufacturing experience includes positions such as Supply Operations Manager, Strategy Advisor, Business Opportunity Manager, Business Lead – Global SAP Implementation, Director eCommerce & Transformation, and VP Programmes – Technical IT Systems.

Jim stays active and engaged through volunteer pursuits and professional consulting. His advisory approach is to partner with business leaders in understanding their opportunities and challenges, then developing and implementing fit-for-purpose solutions to deliver sustainable benefits.

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John Baric

Principal Consultant

John has enjoyed nearly 40 years’ international experience with Shell in Refinery operations and Hydroprocessing technologies. Over the past 18 years John was based in Amsterdam in his role with Shell Catalysts & Technologies as Licensing Technology Manager, primarily responsible for global licensing of Shell’s Hydrocracking and Base Oils technologies.

His expertise areas are: Hydrotreating/Hydrocracking, Residue Upgrading, Light Ends Upgrading, Base Oils Production, Refinery Operations & Optimisation, Refinery/Petrochemicals Integration.

Recognized as an international expert in Refining Technology: speaker at major conferences (ERTC, BBTC, RRTC, METECH etc.).

He joined Petrogenium as Principal Consultant Hydrocracking, Base Oils and Residue Upgrading in 2021.

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Jason Beever

Principal Consultant

Jason is an enthusiastic Measurement & Loss Control expert focused on process improvement and adherence to best practices and industry standards. With 22+ years experience in support of Refining and Chemicals processes, he combines deep knowledge of financial and operational functions to bring practical solutions that translate into bottom line impact.

His specific areas of expertise cover Custody Transfer Measurement (all transportation modes), Loss Control to ensure fair value captured for oil movements, and Mass Balance for visibility of where loss may occur. As the Global Process Owner for Shell Global Downstream, Jason successfully developed and enhanced global processes around measurement & loss control, as well as designed and implemented programs to deliver assessments and assurance to promote sustainability of loss mitigation and value creation.

Jason reached his level of expertise whilst working for Shell’s Global Manufacturing Support & Excellence organization, multiple downstream assets, 2 Joint Ventures and collaboration with several external vendors and service providers.

In 2020 Jason left Shell to start his own professional services consulting firm and later joined Petrogenium in 2022 as Principal Consultant Measurement & Loss Control.

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Jack Buehler

Principal Consultant

Jack has over 40 years of operations, engineering, and commercial experience with Shell, Union Carbide, and DOW Chemical including 15 years focused on energy efficiency, utilities, reliability, and GHG reduction. Jack recently retired from Shell as a Principal Engineer for Utilities, Energy/GHG Reduction, Renewables. He has helped Shell identify Energy and GHG reduction opportunities for assets and new projects and was most recently supporting Renewable energy projects supporting the Energy Transition. He has broad experience working with Downstream Refining and Chemicals, Upstream, and LNG. Jack has conducted energy assessments at the major Shell North and South America refinery sites and supported JVs and 3rd party Energy Studies.

Prior to joining Shell, Jack worked for Union Carbide and Dow with many roles including Operations, start-up of three ethylene crackers, Process Engineering, Feedstock purchasing, and JV contract negotiations. At UCC he was leader of the Corporate Competitiveness Program which resulted in energy reductions and capacity creep increases equivalent to $150MM+ in annual savings.

Jack has a keen interest in helping companies with the energy transition and is currently doing consulting work when not biking. Jack is a member of AIChE and the Ethylene Producers Committee (EPC) and has chaired the EPC Technology session at the annual AIChE/EPC conference. He is an active member of the Advisory Board of TIEEP (Texas Industries Energy Efficiency Program). Jack has a B.S in Chemical Engineering from the University of Delaware.

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Tom Chupick PetrogeniumTom Chupick

Principal Consultant

Tom has almost 4 decades of experience, with a foundation in refinery technologies and operations that has helped a wider range of industries improve energy efficiency and develop credible decarbonization roadmaps.

Tom is passionate about improving energy and resource efficiency in refinery and chemical complexes, both to improve short-term competitiveness and to reduce the cost of long-term decarbonization. After >100 site assessments, with selected development and implementation support, assets have consistently realized new opportunities beyond their initial plans. This requires an understanding of process, utility and equipment constraints from both operations and design perspectives, as well as leveraging on successes (or key learnings) from implementation experience at similar sites. He was also involved in a number of hydrogen pinch studies.

In 2021 Tom took early retirement from Shell to join Petrogenium as Principal Consultant.

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Lucibar Davalillo

Principal Consultant

Lucibar is a passionate process engineer with many years of experience in refinery and mid-stream process, technology design, start-up, operation, research & development, and customer unit support. His specific areas of expertise cover residue upgrade technologies with an emphasis on Delayed Coking and Flexicoking. Lucibar has successfully designed and revamped numerous deep conversion units including novel design concepts and energy integration schemes as well as extensive shutdown and start-up experience.

Lucibar’s adaptive leadership through effective team management, projects, unit shutdowns, turnarounds, commissioning and start-ups has contributed to his success while providing excellent results to several companies and clients.

Beyond work, he enjoys quality time with his family and especially his two beautiful grandkids.

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Charlie Herron

Senior Consultant

Charlie is a process engineer with 35 years of experience in Refinery Process Technology, design, commissioning, start-up and shutdowns, operation, and customer support. His specific areas of expertise include Fractionation, Sulfuric Acid Alkylation, Delayed Coking and Energy Studies. Charlie has successfully designed and revamped numerous Refinery Fractionation Towers and Alkylation Refrigeration Systems. He has extensive commissioning, shutdown and start-up experience. Charlie developed his expertise while working for Shell in the Deer Park Refinery, the Puget Sound Refinery and Shell’s Technology Center (Houston Office). At the Technology Center he was responsible for global Shell and Joint Venture clients.

In 2018 Charlie retired from Shell and joined Petrogenium in 2022 as Principal Consultant Fractionation and Sulfuric Acid Alkylation.

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Dave Holthaus

Principal Consultant

Dave Holthaus has over 50 years of experience in NDE/QA/QC/QE, in the Petro-Chemical, Oil & Gas, Aviation, and Automotive Industries, as well as Nuclear and Fossil Fuel Power Generation. Subject Matter Expert in NDE with extensive knowledge and expertise During his career, his initial responsibilities were to perform VT, PT, MT, RT, & UT examinations. Later his responsibilities were focused on NDE certification program development, NDE procedure development/reviews, as well as the performance of Monitoring, Auditing, Independent Review and Assessment of Quality Programs. Developed NDE procedures and conducted NDE training courses in Ultrasonic, Radiography, Magnetic Particle, Penetrant, and Visual examination methods for numerous clients. Conducted countless surveillances and monitored activities in a timely manner to assist and to report on the overall effectiveness of the Quality Assurance Programs. Initiated, analyzed, recommended, and provided solutions for quality related problems. The main focus for the past 14 years was to conduct Proficiency Qualification Demonstrations of Advanced Ultrasonic Procedures and Ultrasonic Examiners, for API and ASME Code Compliance.

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Himanshu Joshi

Principal Consultant

Himanshu spent 33 years working in the field of heat exchangers and fouling for two major oil companies.  At ExxonMobil besides the routine heat exchanger responsibilities, he was the SME for their Energy Management program and for heat exchanger fouling.  He was part of the team which developed a fouling deposit analysis protocol that resulted in two patents.  He has written a book chapter on this subject.

At Shell he was the SME for fouling and heat transfer technology (enhanced heat transfer).  As part of the fouling work, he designed and led a program to test fouling at a pilot-plant scale, resulting in the development of a fouling predictive method unique in the refining industry.  He spent several years in overseas offices (Malaysia, India, Canada) training and mentoring new recruits and building the capabilities in the heat transfer discipline.  In the technology area he has worked on major R&D projects to develop new cooling techniques for LNG facilities and to develop heat exchanger monitoring techniques.

He is intimately familiar with all aspects (design, troubleshooting, reliability, maintenance) of oil & gas heat exchangers, in all business segments.  He has had two assignments at operating plants, and has served on API Standards committees, on the HTRI (Heat Transfer Research Inc.) Technical Committee, and on a couple of HTRI task forces.  With both employers he developed and taught training classes related to heat exchanger design, troubleshooting, and fouling.

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Steve Kalota

Principal Consultant

Steve is a process engineer with over 40 years experience concentrated in the operations and design of the Fluid Catalytic Cracking technology. His breadth of expertise includes all aspects of FCC, including performance optimization, reliability enhancement, environmental compliance, startup and Turnaround inspection support, procedures, incident evaluation, and training. He has also worked successfully in other fluidized solids applications in coking, coal gasification, petrochemicals, biomass, and tar sands upgrading.

Steve’s career started at UOP, where he was on commissioning crews for 7 grassroots startups, including 2 as Lead Startup Chief. After 1 year in UOP’s home office as a FCC Service Engineer responsible for technical support of 60 licensed, operating FCC, Steve worked in 2 Refining companies to enhance his industry experience, where he was an FCC Process Engineer, then Process Engineering Manager, and then a Refinery Operations Manager. Steve returned to dedicated FCC work, joining Kellogg Brown & Root as FCCU Process Design Manager and 3 years later, assuming all KBR operating unit technical service responsibilities for 70 units, as well as commissioning 5 more KBR grassroots units.

In 1998, Steve formed Expertech Consulting to provide independent operations and design technical support for FCC worldwide. Since that time, he has participated in 5 more grass roots startups, 30+ revamp inspections and startups, and provided on-site services to 100 FCC globally. Steve has successfully completed innumerable basic engineering designs for revamps or replacements of Risers, distributors, standpipes, cyclone revamps, and many more non-proprietary elements. He has presented training from 4 hour site and equipment specific programs to 5 day comprehensive seminars. He is co-inventor of 5 U.S. patents.

Steve is a results-oriented technical service provider who strives to deliver the optimal solutions or guidance based on the client’s overall needs for performance, reliability, and cost-effectiveness. He has developed excellent communication skills to ensure clients, regardless of location or language, are involved and assured of receiving a high quality, successful work product.

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Selwyn Maduro

Principal Consultant

Selwyn is a seasoned, well-qualified, dedicated, results-driven, proactive, and dynamic Refinery Downstream professional with more than 35 years of comprehensive experience with SHELL, Petroleos de Venezuela and Saudi Aramco.

Known as an innovative self-motivator with a proven ability to create strategies, implement changes, and set up sustainable management structures with the goal of implementing continuous improvements. Able to multitask well and to manage a high-performance workforce. Recognised as a superior communicator and for the ability to work well under pressure and interact effectively with people at all levels with the organisation. Possesses high personal standards and consistently leads teams to achieve objectives by applying a working attitude with a strong emphasis on professional relationships based on trust and respect.

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Shailendra Mehrotra

Managing Consultant

Shailendra is a versatile and accomplished leader with extensive experience in the oil and gas industry. He has a proven track record of delivering operational excellence and digital transformation through technology and people. He tackles new and complex challenges and drives continuous improvement. With a persuasive leadership style, he builds high performance teams, embraces diverse environments, promotes creativity and effective problem solving, and achieves breakthrough results.

In his last role in Shell, he led technology opportunity management, quality, performance, and direction of a very large engineering software portfolio. As there is constant evolution of technologies in this domain, all of them inherently “digital,” it is important to influence the vendors and industry consortia to harvest fit-for-purpose technologies that either substitute or append to deployed kit on existing assets and projects. He was directly involved with making those choices in consultation with senior business leaders, considering total cost of ownership, scalability, and sustainability of solutions.

Shailendra left Shell in 2021 and recently joined Petrogenium as Managing Consultant.

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Ken Savoie

Principal Consultant

Ken is an experienced Rotating Equipment Engineer. He worked with Shell Oil Company for 32 years, specializing in the Rotating Equipment Engineering discipline during the last 27 years. Ken spent his first 22 years at Shell’s Deer Park Refinery and Chemical Complex providing rotating equipment and reliability technical support to operations, maintenance and turnarounds as well as supporting two major refinery expansion projects.

Ken spent 7 of his last 10 years with Shell on mega-projects in China and Qatar. Shell built a $4.3 billion petrochemical facility in China and Ken joined the project during the design phase. He later took on the role as Lead Rotating Equipment Engineer during the construction and commissioning phases of the project. In Qatar Shell built a 19 billion Gas to Liquids facility and Ken was the Lead Rotating Equipment Engineer for that asset. He and his team supported the construction and commissioning effort and took over the rotating equipment responsibilities during start up and beyond.

Ken also worked 2-1/2 years between the assignments in China and Qatar with Shell Global Solutions in Houston. There he provided support to several upstream energy projects in various phases of development (early concept to detail design) and provided technical support and solutions to various Shell and non-Shell manufacturing locations. He represented Shell on 3 API committees during that period.

Ken retired from Shell in 2013 but continues to occasionally provide Rotating Equipment Specialist support primarily for clients in the refining and petrochemical industries. He joined the Petrogenium Team in May of 2022.

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Karen Shook

Principal Consultant

Karen developed an interest in hydrocarbon management, supply and optimization planning early in her career and in her 35 years in the Refining and Petrochemical industry has held most of the roles associated with Refinery Economics and Scheduling including business coordinator for gasoline, aromatics and lubricants, economic model (linear programs and scheduling models) coordinator, and Economics and Scheduling manager.  This background was useful in her most recent role as a hydrocarbon management consultant doing margin improvement, master planning, and project development projects for clients in E&P, Supply, Refining, Chemicals, and Alternate Fuels businesses for Shell and non-Shell clients.

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Alan Thangavelo

Principal Consultant

Alan is an experienced refinery planning and margin optimization consultant with deep LP technical expertise. He has a strong track record of delivering large scale PIMS LP projects and related planning solutions and best practices to operating companies with refineries and petrochemicals and consistently receives high customer satisfaction on delivered projects.

In total, Alan has 40+ years of petroleum industry experience, including 25 years of direct experience in supply chain optimization. He has worked as a senior internal consultant for oil majors Shell and ExxonMobil with several international postings in The Netherlands, Germany, Australia, USA, UK, Japan, Malaysia and Singapore. In addition, Alan has led many consulting/project services for Shell Global Solution’s JV and Third Party clients in all regions globally.

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Lance Ulrich

Managing Principal

Lance has always been pushing for technology adoption and refinery digitization over his 30 years of experience in and around the petroleum refining industry.  The first 10 years were “boots on the ground” as a Process/APC Engineer, Operators Supervisor, Project Manager and PSM Coordinator.  Projects include installing a refinery wide network/PI system and a new DCS.  Lance was also a Turnaround Supervisor for 5 turnarounds during this time. The next 20 years focused on Planning and Economics first as a Models Engineer where he built one of the first full refinery flowsheet models using Hysys and KBC’s SIM Reactor Suite of first principal models.  Lance then progressed as a Planning and Economics Engineer, Manger, Director and VP.  Along the way he worked as a Consultant for Purvin and Gertz as well as the PIMS Product Director at AspenTech.  Lance is an effective, people-oriented working manager with extensive experience in 9 different oil refineries  as both an individual contributor and leader of high-performing teams.  He has a proven ability to generate tens of millions of dollars through relationship-building with key individuals who can uncover hidden opportunities.  Lance uses his influence and communication skills to affect creative solutions and is recognized by superiors and peers as an effective leader with a unique combination of technical and interpersonal skills.

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Introducing Petrogenium USA LLC

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