William L. Coleman

Chairman of the Board & Founder

William L. Coleman has been managing Zavanna’s growth and strategic direction since its formation in 1994.

In 1981, Bill founded Prairie Petroleum, Inc. (Prairie), to market oil and gas prospects in the Williston and Powder River Basins. Prairie formed the foundation for Zavanna. Bill received his BA in Economics from Duke University in 1973 and his MBA from Tulane University in 1978. He began his career as a Landman with Atlantic Richfield in 1975, working in its Denver, Dallas and Midland offices. In 1979, he moved to Aminol USA in Houston to work the offshore Gulf Coast and moved on to become a Division Land Manager for the Rocky Mountains.
Read More

David Hodges

Chief Executive Officer & President

David Hodges was elected President and Chief Executive Officer of Zavanna, LLC by the board of directors as of October 2018.

David has a passion for growing the company significantly beyond what it is today by focusing on the personal and professional development of each individual employee, believing that the key to a successful company lies in its people.

David joined Zavanna in August of 2012 as the Senior Vice President of Operations and in August of 2015 became the Chief Operating Officer. During this time, David helped Zavanna grow its gross production base from 3,000 boe/day to a peak of 25,000 boe/day.

David spent the first six years of his career on the service side. During 2005, David made the switch from service to operator and joined Ultra Petroleum as an Operations Engineer. David grew with Ultra from 2005 through 2012 in various roles with increasing management responsibilities.

David now has more than two decades of experience in the energy industry and extensive field level operations experience in multiple basins including the San Juan, Green River, Marcellus, DJ, and Bakken.  He has provided executive level leadership, guidance, and vision for 60,000 acres in Bakken development with over $1.2bn in gross capital spent to date.  David has successfully led companies through multiple industry downturns, always finding creative ways to deliver returns during those times.

David obtained his BS in Chemical Engineering from the University of Buffalo and his Executive MBA from the University of Denver.

Read More

Mitch Meyer

Senior Vice President of GeoSciences

Mitch Meyer has been at Zavanna, LLC since January 2017; first as an advisor and recently as Vice President of Geosciences.

Working with the Business Development and Operations teams while providing growth opportunities to the company via acquisition and exploration opportunities is one of his passions. A greater desire is to lead Zavanna’s excellent team in discovering new hydrocarbon accumulations and growing the company via “grassroots” exploration efforts. Mitch is also excited to reinstate the analytical exploration methodology which led to Zavanna’s successes during the past decades.

Mitch believes that a portfolio approach to building growth opportunities is best, as he strives for a balance of conventional versus unconventional, hydrocarbon phase and geographical diversity to Zavanna’s future. With over 30 years of experience throughout the Rocky Mountain, Mid-Continent, Texas and Gulf of Mexico Regions studying the geologic, petrophysical and geophysical aspects of numerous hydrocarbon accumulations, Mitch has been responsible for adding millions of barrels of oil equivalents to the reserves of those companies he worked for. Mitch has spent his career at small to medium sized companies where he has always interacted directly with operations, engineering, and land and management groups.

In 1983, Mitch obtained a BS degree in Geology from the University of Northern Colorado where he learned that one must be in the field to truly understand geological processes and not just the classroom.  He has supplemented his BS degree with numerous continuing education courses and the University of “Hard Knocks.”

Read More

Carissa Berres

Vice President of Administration

Carissa Berres is in the business of supporting people.

She began her career as an Administrative Assistant and moved into an Administrative Coordinator role through her seven years working at a tax, business consulting and accounting firm in Lakewood, CO. After a brief stint as a legal assistant, she was hired on to the Zavanna team as Land Administrative Assistant in May 2014. She became Chief of Staff in January 2015, taking over payroll and HR while also supporting the Executive Team and moved into the role of VP of Administration in early 2020.

Carissa has enjoyed the growth and development she has experienced not only in supporting others, but also as a part of the Management Team, where she derives great fulfillment in helping to make Zavanna a great place to work.

Carissa has a BA in Linguistics from the University of Northwestern – St. Paul.

Read More

Ryan T. Kackley

General Counsel & Vice President of Land

Ryan T. Kackley joined Zavanna in August 2014 as Land Manager.

After restructuring the Land Department and implementing a new ownership tracking process/system in a contractually complex company, he became General Counsel and Vice President of Land in November 2017.

Ryan has a passion for growing the company through transactions and grass roots leasing by focusing on developing the Land Department. Having fostered many industry relationships during his career, Ryan believes the most vital and unique part of the oil and gas business is the internal and external relationships that are built by working together.

Ryan began his career at the GHK Company and Chesapeake Energy Corporation where he held various Land and Legal roles working in the Mid-Continent region.  In 2008, he joined Continental Resources, Inc. as a Landman where he was introduced to the Bakken play in North Dakota. Ryan helped Continental grow its land position to 870,000 core net acres and its net production to 50,000 boe/day, while running nine drilling rigs in his prospect. In 2011, Ryan moved to Kodiak Oil & Gas Corporation and continued working the Bakken play as a Senior Landman and Land Manager, where he was in charge of several large acquisitions that grew Kodiak’s core acreage position in the Bakken play to 171,000 net acres before leaving to join the Zavanna team.

Ryan obtained his JD from Oklahoma City University School of Law and his BA from the University of Oklahoma.

Read More

Matt Ott

Vice President of Corporate Development

Matt Ott joined Zavanna, LLC in February 2017 as the Director of Business Development and shortly thereafter moved into his current role as Vice President of Corporate Development, taking responsibility for company strategy, growth initiatives and the company’s reserves.

An Engineer by background, Matt’s drive comes from finding new and creative ways to generate value for the company. He loves to leverage his knowledge of the entire oil and gas industry to create value. Matt’s favorite part of the industry is the people and he feels fortunate to work and have relationships with some of the best and brightest.

Matt spent the first nine years of his career working for Venoco, Inc., first as an Operations Engineers based in California working in multiple basins offshore and onshore. He then moved to the Denver office and became the Manager of Corporate Finance and A&D, spearheading A&D, corporate strategy and restructuring initiatives.

Matt is excited to be a part of taking a company with such a successful history into the future.

Matt obtained his BS in Petroleum Engineering from the Colorado School of Mines.

Read More

Scott McKenzie

Vice President of Accounting

As Vice President of Accounting at Zavanna, LLC, Scott McKenzie is a hands-on leader who focuses on optimal efficiency and employs a careful eye for detail.

His lengthy career at Zavanna has focused on delivering key metrics, careful guidance and reasonable approaches to Zavanna’s leadership team which has helped transition the company into what you see today.

Before joining Zavanna, Scott was with Petrogulf Corporation in various creative roles serving the owner and CEO. Prior to that, Scott served as an Accountant for Weins Capital Management Company.

Scott graduated with a BS in Accounting from Metropolitan State University of Denver & University of Phoenix. He earned his MBA from the University of Phoenix. He served as a full-time AmeriCorps member in 1998 and 1999, working for various government offices.

Read More