PetroNerds, LLC is a boutique energy analytics and advising firm based in Denver, CO. It provides a variety of products and services to help its clients better understand US energy markets, evaluate the performance and assets of US tight oil and gas producers, improve midstream and downstream market knowledge, and provide domestic and global policy context to ongoing events in the both US and abroad.
PetroNerds was founded in 2015 by Ben Montalbano, former Director of Research and Operations of the Energy Policy Research Foundation, Inc. (EPRINC), and Trisha Curtis, EPRINC’s former Director of Research – Upstream and Midstream.
The PetroNerds staff has a published track record of analyzing both global energy markets and policy, enabling it to make sense of today’s US-centric developments for its clients around the globe and provide the context they need to make decisions. In addition to publishing reports in respected industry publications such as Oil & Gas Journal and World Oil, the staff has led research projects with the Department of Defense and the Department of Energy in support of the 2015 Quadrennial Energy Review (QER). PetroNerds has also worked closely with upstream and midstream companies to provide market guidance and analysis in support of their operations and investment activities.
About the Founders
Trisha Curtis, Co-founder
Trisha Curtis is a Co-founder of PetroNerds, LLC. She was formerly the Director of Research, Upstream and Midstream, at the Energy Policy Research Foundation, Inc. (EPRINC). Since 2010, she has led extensive research efforts and authored several reports on the North American upstream and midstream markets. In November 2015, Ms. Curtis published a study on the state of U.S. shale oil in a low oil price environment with the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies (OIES) and EPRINC. She spearheaded EPRINC’s projects with Department of Energy for the Quadrennial Energy Review, evaluating future North American crude oil production volumes and midstream transportation options through 2030.
At PetroNerds, Ms. Curtis is currently evaluating U.S. upstream assets on a wells-up basis, assessing the viability of midstream and downstream projects, and studying global markets in order to assess the impact of lower oil prices on the U.S and other major oil producing nations. Ms. Curtis’ work for Department of Defense has focused extensively on China and international economics.
Ms. Curtis is a research fellow at the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies (OIES) and a non-resident fellow at the Energy Policy Research Foundation, Inc.
Ms. Curtis completed her undergraduate work at Regis University in Denver, Colorado where she double majored in Economics and Politics, minored in Criminology, and graduated Summa Cum Laude. She has a Master of Science (MSc) degree from the London School of Economics in International Political Economy and wrote her MSc Dissertation on Chinese National Oil Companies. As an undergraduate, she also worked as a staff assistant in UK Parliament for John Grogan, Selby Constituency. Raised in northwest Colorado and southwest Wyoming, she grew up around pump jacks and has worked on oil and gas sites in Colorado and Wyoming.
Ben Montalbano, Co-founder
Ben Montalbano co-founded PetroNerds, LLC in 2015. He currently leads the company’s product development efforts, supports consulting and research projects, and manages day-to-day operations. Prior to forming PetroNerds, Ben was Director of Research and Operations at the Energy Policy Research Foundation (EPRINC) in Washington, DC. He remains a member of EPRINC’s Board of Trustees.
His research at the foundation covered global energy markets and policy developments with a focus on oil, natural gas, and biofuels. Ben’s work has been published in industry journals such as World Oil and the Oil & Gas Journal and has appeared in Platts, Bloomberg, Politico, the Washington Post and the Financial Times. He has presented before several prominent international energy venues, including CSIS (Center for Strategic International Studies), the Clingendael Institute, and the CWC Kurdistan-Iraq Oil and Gas conference in Erbil, Kurdistan, Iraq.
Ben led EPRINC’s contract research projects with the Office of Net Assessment of the United States Department of Defense over the span of several years. His work focused on Middle East oil markets and specifically on Iraqi oil development following the infamous 2009 oil auctions. He likewise helped lead the foundation’s work with the United States Department of Energy in support of the 2015 Quadrennial Energy Review (QER). He also contributed to the National Petroleum Council’s Future Transportation Fuels study.
Ben is an experienced software developer and, in addition to developing tools for PetroNerds’ internal use, has developed apps for iOS. Ben previously worked for Raymond James and software company Liquid Scenarios. He is a Russian speaker and graduate of the University of Colorado Boulder where he studied economics and Russian.