Golden, Colo.-based fund Meritage Midstream Services II has named three to its team: Nicholas Aretakis and Richard Gognat join Meritage Midstream from High Sierra Energy LP. Aretakis will serve as senior vice president and chief financial officer, and Gognat will oversee all legal and land matters as senior vice president and general counsel. Terry Herauf has been appointed director of operations. Herauf most recently served as general manager with Copano Pipelines/Rocky Mountains LLC.
Meritage Midstream Services II, LLC today announced three new appointments to its senior leadership team. The company’s new executives will serve critical roles at Meritage, which recently secured a $500 million private equity commitment from Riverstone Holdings LLC. Meritage is focused on acquiring and constructing oil and gas midstream assets, including natural gas gathering and processing, crude oil transportation and wastewater transportation, treating and disposal facilities.
“Our team just keeps getting better and better”
Nicholas Aretakis and Richard J. Gognat join Meritage Midstream from High Sierra Energy, LP. Each brings more than 30 years of energy-sector experience to Meritage. Aretakis will serve as senior vice president and chief financial officer, and Gognat will oversee all legal and land matters as senior vice president and general counsel. Terry Herauf has been appointed director of operations. Herauf joins Meritage after 31 years in the natural gas business, having most recently served as general manager with Copano Pipelines/Rocky Mountains LLC.
“Our team just keeps getting better and better,” said Meritage Chairman and CEO Steve Huckaby. “The right people are always a priority for us. With the additions of Nick, Rich and Terry, we have assembled a top-tier group that gives Meritage Midstream the strategic and technical skills and deep experience necessary to support producers’ drilling and production in rapidly developing resource plays. Each of these outstanding executives positions Meritage to take full advantage of our current opportunities.”
These appointments come in addition to other strategic changes in Meritage’s leadership team. Meritage President and CEO Steve Huckaby will serve as chairman and CEO, while former Vice President for Business Development Nick Thomas assumes the role of president. Stacy Horn has been promoted to senior vice president for commercial, and Mark Moon has been promoted to director of finance and planning.
Nicholas Aretakis, Senior Vice President & Chief Financial Officer
Prior to joining Meritage, Nick Aretakis served as senior vice president and chief financial officer at High Sierra where he led $1 billion in acquisition and divestiture transactions and was directly responsible for arranging a $295 million credit facility. He played a key role in the recent sale of High Sierra to NGL Energy Partners, LP for $693 million, working with the buyer to arrange a $645 million credit facility and $250 million in long-term notes. Aretakis’ prior experience includes chief financial officer for a Denver-based private midstream gas company; vice president of finance for a private exploration and production company; and chief financial officer for a Canadian public exploration and production company. Additionally, Nick worked for a mezzanine lender to the energy industry, evaluating and placing debt and equity with small energy companies. Nick earned his Bachelor of Arts degree at Michigan State University in accounting and financial administration.
Richard J. Gognat, Senior Vice President & General Counsel
Rich Gognat joins Meritage after serving as senior vice president, chief legal officer and secretary at High Sierra, having formed the company’s first legal department where he oversaw multiple transactions with a total value of $1 billion. Prior to High Sierra, Gognat was senior vice president, general counsel and corporate secretary of Oklahoma’s SandRidge Energy, Inc. where he led a legal team that was responsible for the consummation of more than $4.5 billion of M&A and capital markets transactions. He has also held senior legal positions with DCP Midstream. He received his Bachelor of Science in business administration from Regis University in 1982 and a law degree, with honors, from the University of Tulsa College of Law in 1989.
Terry Herauf, Director of Operations
Herauf most recently served as general manager with Copano Pipelines/Rocky Mountains, LLC, where he was responsible for all aspects of a 295-mile high and low pressure gathering system including operations, maintenance, measurement, safety, new construction, permitting, testing and compliance. In this role, Herauf managed a $16 million annual budget and 21 direct reports. He also provided cost estimates for new projects and worked to help bring new business to Copano in the Rocky Mountain district. Before joining Copano, he was system manager for Cantera Natural Gas LLC and Bearpaw Energy LLC, managing numerous projects, employees and inspectors, along with annual budgets from $12 million to $18 million.
About Meritage Midstream Services
Headquartered in Golden, Colo., Meritage Midstream provides oil and gas producers with a full complement of midstream services. Capabilities include the gathering, treating, processing and handling of natural gas, natural gas liquids, crude oil, produced water and condensate. The company’s senior management team has more than 200 years of collective experience in the oil and gas midstream business. Meritage is backed by equity commitments from Riverstone Holdings LLC.