Mr. Wilson worked his way up to Vice President in 1989 and later purchased Western Land Services in 1992.
Western Land Services, Inc. was formed in 1974 as Western States Oil Company, Inc. by T.T. Thompson. Mr. Thompson is a graduate of the University of Virginia and the Harvard Law School. He had been with Shell Oil Company for 19 years as a Division Landman prior to forming Western States Oil Company.
During the 1970s and early 1980s, Western States Oil Company was primarily focused on oil and gas prospect generation in the State of Michigan. The Niagaran formation was a major oil and gas play in Northern Michigan in which Western States Oil Company, Inc. developed numerous drilling prospects for the industry.
In 1980, John K. Wilson joined the firm as a landman. John is a graduate of Michigan State University’s School of Business. Mr. Wilson worked his way up through the firm to Vice President of Land in 1989, purchased the company in 1992 upon the retirement of T.T. Thompson, and soon thereafter changed the name to Western Land Services, Inc.
During the late 1980s and through the 1990s Western Land Services, Inc. developed into a major oil and gas brokerage service company providing land and regulatory services to oil and gas companies and utilities. Some of Western Land Services’ clients have included: Unocal, Arco, Gulf Oil, Mark West, Tenneco, CMS Oil & Gas, Chevron, Martin Marietta, Williams Energy, Marathon Oil Company, Wolverine Gas and Oil Corporation, Berry Petroleum, Western Gas Resources, and numerous other smaller independents.
During the early to mid 1990’s Western Land Services, Inc. provided support to Terra Energy, Ltd, the largest developer of Michigan’s Antrim Shale Play in Northern Michigan. The Antrim Play involved the drilling of over 7,000 wells in projects of approximately 25 to 75 wells each, and was the largest natural gas play in the United States at that time. The large number of wells forced companies to find innovative ways to bring projects on-line timely, and deal with land owner concerns caused by the extensive surface operations.
Western was at the forefront of industry changes dealing with these unique operational challenges. As a result, Western’s focus changed from traditional oil and gas leasing services, to a company focused on all aspects of oil and gas resource development. This included traditional leasing and title work, as well as project layout and design, coordinating wildlife and environmental studies and directing and coordinating field activities. Terra Energy, Ltd. was ultimately acquired by CMS Oil and Gas, a division of CMS Energy, and Western remained a key component in CMS’s development and operations in Michigan.
In 1998, CMS Oil & Gas acquired a ½ interest in Pennaco’s Powder River Basin acreage block in the emerging Powder River Coal Bed Methane (“CBM”) play. CMS invited Western to continue to play a key role in their Powder River CBM operations and in 1999, Western opened the Sheridan, Wyoming office to service the Powder River Basin CBM play. Today Western has 50 employees and contractors based in Sheridan, Wyoming providing regulatory, environmental, survey, wildlife and archeological services to various CBM operators.
Presently, Western Land Services employs over 500 people and has offices in Ludington, Michigan; Sheridan, Wyoming; Sidney, Montana; Salem, Ohio; Moundsville, West Virginia; Fort Worth, Texas; Tunkhannock, Pennsylvania; Butler, Pennsylvania; New Castle, Pennsylvania; and Canonsburg, Pennsylvania and has pursued oil and gas projects in over 34 states.
Western Land Services Today
For over three decades, Western Land Services has been active in helping clients develop large acreage positions in various oil and gas plays throughout the United States. Western Land Services has been a front-runner in the identification of prospects and development of emerging oil and gas resource plays; not only in a brokerage capacity, but also as an active participant, sharing in the progression of operations as well.
Western Land Services – Western Division
Based in Sheridan, Wyoming, the firm’s Western Division has shaped a successful team integrating multiple disciplines including expertise in cultural resources, natural resources, water management, wildlife biology, land surveying and engineering, GIS and mapping, with oil and gas project planning, development and execution. This superior approach to projects has met with noteworthy success.
With ten offices, Western Land Services is here to serve you!
1100 Conrad Industrial Dr.
Ludington, Michigan 49431
Phone: (800) 968-4840
Fax: (231) 843-3183 (Main)
Fax: (231) 843-6298 (Landmen)
375 Southpointe BLVD Suite 430
Canonsburg, PA 15317
Toll Free: (877) 775-2972
Local: (724) 743-2972
Fax: (877) 322-3183
1662 South Sheridan Ave.
Sheridan, Wyoming 82801
Phone: (877) 673-1817
Fax: (307) 673-1823