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Gary Scott Steffens

Gary Scott Steffens

Adjunct Professor in Energy Management


M.S., University of Oklahoma, Geology, 1980
B.S., Central Missouri State University, Geology, 1977


Gary Scott Steffens is a retired senior geological advisor for Shell Exploration & Production Company. His 36 years of industry experience includes most of the world’s oceans and continents. Gary also built and directed numerous exploration research programs and is recognized as a marine deep-water exploration expert through his international technical publications.

Gary was also an energy spokesperson for Shell and the industry, engaging and working with federal congressional members, DOD Pentagon directors, White House advisors, DOI/DOE regulators, governors, state legislators and numerous county/city officials. In retirement, Gary splits his time between Houston, Texas and Gunnison, Colorado. He is an adjunct professor at Western Colorado University, teaching in both the Geology and Business Energy Management departments. He also plans and logs water wells for the Gunnison community.

Q&A With Professor Steffens

How did you discover Western?

Part-time resident of Gunnison County in retirement and wanted to volunteer teach at the university.

What are some of the highlights of your career?

  • Global Exploration and Research for Shell Oil Company
  • Geological fieldwork in Alaska, Canada, Spain, Chile and South Africa
  • Shell and Industry energy spokesperson, working with federal, state and local community leaders
  • Cambridge University and Rice University Leadership and Management Programs

What most excites you about your field?

Sharing my experience and knowledge with students.

What is your favorite thing about the Gunnison Valley?

Exploring the history of the Gunnison Valley and hiking the wilderness in the summer and fall.

Courses Taught

  • 1990-2016: Numerous internal Shell courses in hydrocarbon exploration and geology
  • 2015: Gulf of Mexico primer course, Houston Geological Society
  • 2016-2019: BUAD 495 at Western – Capstone class (with other professors)
  • 2018: BUAD 305 at Western (assisted professor)
  • Various Western guest lectures in Geology, Business Energy Management and Environmental Management


  • 1986-2015: Numerous technical articles in geology and hydrocarbon exploration
  • June/September 2003: Marine and Petroleum Geology Thematic Set on Turbidites: Models and Problems (by Mutti, Steffens, Pirmez, Orlando and Roberts)
  • 2008 Book: Atlas of Deep-Water Outcrops, AAPG Studies in Geology 56 (by Nilson, Shew, Steffens and Studlick)
  • Steffens/Luedloff Family History Book, Copyright August 2018

External Professional Affiliations

American Association of Petroleum Geologists

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