YOUNGSTOWN - A natural gas and Utica shale conference and expo set to open Thursday morning at Youngstown's Covelli Centre will provide information and education about the drilling industry on a whole new level, organizers said.
The second annual Youngstown Ohio Utica & Natural Gas, or Y.O.U.N.G., Conference and Expo, sponsored by the Youngstown-Warren Regional Chamber, will go a step above last year's more basic goal of educating the general public about what the Utica Shale is expected to bring to Northeast Ohio.
''It was kind of the opening round last year of our knowledge and interest,'' said Chamber Vice President for Government and Media Affairs Tony Paglia. ''This year is more directed about opportunities for businesses.''
About 115 exhibitors, experts and sponsors with connections to the burgeoning energy revolution will offer exhibits and information about the oil and natural gas industry, the supply chain for the industry and the potential for growth in the mid-stream process, among other topics.
While the general public is welcome, this year's show is being billed by the Chamber as a "business-to-business" event intended to help companies and consultants to establish professional connections and stay up-to-date on industry developments.
In addition to the exhibits, speakers will include V&M Star president and Chief Operating Officer Joel Mastervich; John Bonn, president of NiSource Midstream Services; and director of Global Manufacturing Expansion for Exterran, Sean Clawges; along with local mayors and other speakers.
Y.O.U.N.G. event highlights:
8:30 a.m. - Exhibit floor doors open
9:15 a.m. - Welcome, Youngstown Mayor Charles Sammarone
9:20 a.m. - Joel Mastervich, President & Chief Operating Officer, V&M
10 a.m. - David Mustine, Managing Director - Energy, Chemicals & Polymers, JobsOhio
11 a.m. - Harry Schurr, General Manager of Utica Operations and Hess J.V., Consol Energy
2 p.m. - Welcome, Warren Mayor Doug Franklin
2:05 p.m. - John Bonn, President, NiSource Midstream Services, LLC
3:05 p.m. - Sean Clawges, Director of Global Manufacturing Expansion, Exterran
10:30 a.m. - Doing Business in Ohio, Attys. R. Clint Zollinger & John A. Murphy, Day Ketterer, Ltd., Attorneys at Law
11:30 a.m. - Crisis Public Relations for the Shale Industry: True Tales from the Trenches, Vince Bevacqua, Executive Vice President, ShaleComm
12:30 p.m. - Risk Management Practices and Coverage: A 101 for Shale Players, James Klingensmith, Keystone Shale Solutions
1:30 p.m. - Air Quality Issues for Oil and Gas Permitting in Ohio, Kristian Macoskey, QEP, Civil and Environmental Consultants
Other presentations will focus on topics like Doing Business in Ohio, Crisis Public Relations for the Shale Industry and Air Quality Issues for oil and gas permitting in Ohio.
Exhibit space is sold out, and more than 1,100 tickets have been sold for attendance to Thursday's event. Tickets will be available at the door for a cost of $100. Doors open at 8:30 a.m. Thursday. Exhibits will remain open until 5 p.m.
A second half-day of seminars has been scheduled this year for 9 a.m. to noon Friday at the Boardman Holiday Inn at an additional entry fee of $50. Those break-out sessions will include discussions about mid-stream processing and water resources, among other related topics.
''A lot of people are coming in from all over the country and people wanting to make contact,'' Paglia said.