Western States Petroleum Association (WSPA)
The Western States Petroleum Association (WSPA), founded in 1907, describes itself as the oldest petroleum trade association in the United States. WSPA maintains headquarters in Sacramento, California with additional offices across the western states.
WSPA President Catherine Reheis-Boyd is former chair of the Marine Life Protection Act (MLPA) Initiative Blue Ribbon Task Force designed to create “marine protected areas in Southern California.” Counterpunch wrote these areas, created under her leadership, “fail to protect the ocean from fracking, offshore oil drilling, oil spills, pollution, military testing, energy projects and all human impacts on the ocean other than sustainable fishing and gathering.” 
While WSPA‘s official climate policy statement supports “market mechanisms” such as a cap-and-trade program, the organization has fought against bills designed to reduce GHG emissions through a cap and trade system. For example, leaked documents revealed the WSPA‘s plan to create a network of “citizen activist” groups combatting California’s AB 32 Low Carbon Fuel Standards (LCFS) in California, Oregon and Washington State. 
WSPA projects have included the California Drivers Alliance, a group claiming to represent the “voice of consumers, farmers, small businesses and fuel suppliers in California” while focusing on opposing Senate Bill 350, which would reduce petroleum use in California by 50% while increasing renewables. The group’s website, Californiadriversalliance.org, appears to have ceased operating in the summer of 2017. , , , 
The independent UK-based non-profit InfluenceMap gives the WSPA a poor, or “F” score on climate policy, noting it has specifically lobbyied against policy in U.S state legislatures in California, Oregon, and Washington. 
Stance on Climate Change
“WSPA supports market mechanisms such as a well-designed cap-and-trade program as a cost-effective approach to reducing emissions and achieving stringent greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction goals […]
WSPA opposes direct command-and-control regulations which have a tendency to drive up compliance costs while having less environmental benefit.”
WSPA‘s membership has included some of the largest oil, pipeline, and energy companies in the United States such as BP, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, ExxonMobil, Marathon Oil, Shell, Valero and numerous others. View all member companies below.
WSPA has been described as the most powerful corporate lobbying group in Sacramento, spending over $14 million between January 2015 and August 2016. 
The WSPA was at the top of the list of California lobbying groups in 2017, spending almost $1.4 million in the first quarter. 
The Sacramento Bee noted that a majority of the WSPA‘s lobbying expenditures were “under a catch-all ‘other’ category that requires no detailed disclosure showing who benefited or how the money was spent.” 
According to a sample 2018 lobbing report filed at California Secretary of State, WSPA‘s lobbying focus from January to April 2018 included bills AB378 and implementation of AB398, the former regarding the social cost of carbon emissions due to greenhouse gases and the latter which added statements to the Health and Safety Code including that “Global warming poses a serious threat to the economic well-being, public health, natural resources, and the environment of California.” Among numerous other bills, WSPA also lobbied on the low carbon fuel standard rulemaking and cap and trade regulations. 
|Kevin Buchan||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Manager, Bay Area Region|
|Suzanne Noble||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Director, Production Operations|
|Jodie Muller||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Vice President of Government & External Affairs|
|Steve Slakey||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Chief Financial Officer|
|William Ferrari||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Director, Information Technology|
|Patty Senecal||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Director, Southern California Operations|
|Kris Hollinger||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Manager, Finance and Accounting|
|Jessica Spiegel||Y||Y||Y||Y||Manager, Northwest Climate Change & Legislative Policy|
|Tiffany Roberts||Y||Y||Y||Y||Director, Regulatory & Legislative Policy|
|Tom Umenhofer||Y||Y||Y||Y||Vice President, Operations|
|Bob Brown||Y||Y||Y||Director, Bay Area Operations|
|Bob Poole||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Director, Production State & Coastal Issues|
|Bridget McCann||Y||Y||Manager, Southern California Region|
|Julie Berge||Y||Y||Manager, Public Relations|
|Kara Siepmann||Y||Y||Manager, Media Relations|
|Kevin Slagle||Y||Y||Vice President, Strategic Communications|
|Oyango Snell||Y||Y||General Counsel|
|Argelia León||Y||Manager, Strategic Partnerships|
|Luis Sanchez||Y||Manager, California Policy Advocate|
|Margo Parks||Y||Manager, California Policy Advocate|
|Sophie Ellinghouse||Y||Associate Counsel|
|Frank Holmes||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Director, Northwest Operations|
|Jenifer Pitcher||Y||Y||Y||Y||Senior Coordinator, San Joaquin Valley Region|
|Brenna Butler Garcia||Y||Y||Manager, Association Marketing & Constituencies Development|
|Henry T. Perea||Y||Senior Vice President, Policy and Strategic|
|Barbara Chichester||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Senior Analyst, Finance and Accounting|
|Elaine Delgadillo||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Administrative Assistant, South Coast Region and Associates|
|Gina Grey||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Vice President, Strategic Policy, Fuels, Southwest and Hawaii Regions|
|Joey Martinelli||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Executive Assistant, Headquarters|
|Lisa Venegas||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Executive Assistant, Government Affairs and Leadership|
|Michael D. Wang||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Manager, Cross Regional Issues and Legal Affairs|
|Sherlee Bailey||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Administrative Assistant and SJV External Affairs Assistant|
|Tupper Hull||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Vice President, Strategic Communications|
|Marti Tennant||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Administrative Assistant, Northwest Region|
|Guy Bjerke||Y||Y||Y||Y||Manager, Bay Area Region and State Safety Issues|
|Lisa Hom||Y||Y||Y||Administrative Assistant, Headquarters|
|Nick Ortiz||Y||Y||Y||Manager, Production Regions and Property Tax Issues|
|Sandra Burkhart||Y||Y||Y||Senior Coordinator, Coastal Region, State Marine and Waste Issues|
|Joe Sparano||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Executive Advisor to the Chairman of the Board|
|Michaeleen Mason||Y||Y||Y||Director, Climate Change Policy|
|Steve Schuyler||Y||Y||Senior Coordinator, South Coast Region Environmental Marketing|
|Dennis Bolt||Y||Y||Y||Y||Manager, Bay Area Region|
|John Quirk||Y||Y||Y||Coordinator, Finance and Accounting|
|State Waste Issues||Y|
|Ronald Wilkniss||Y||Y||Senior Coordinator, South Coast Issues|
|Springer Chandler||Y||Y||Administrative Assistant|
|Steven Arita||Y||Y||Director of Operations and Cross Regional Issues|
|Jeffrey B. Wilson||Y||Manager, External Affairs and South Coast Advocacy|
Board of Directors
The following is based on publicly available 990 forms:
|Suzanne Noble||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||VP Chief of Staff|
|Jodie Muller||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||VP Gov Affairs|
|David Sanders||Y||Y||Vice Chair|
|Gina Grey||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||VP Strategic Pol|
|Michael Wang||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Manager-Cross Reg|
|R Tupper Hill||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Officer|
|Alan J. Cabodi||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Director|
|Will Ferrari||Y||Y||Manager NW|
|Lynn Westall||Y||Y||Y||Vice Chair|
|Tupper Hull||Y||Director of Communications|
|Thomas A. Markin||Y||Y||Y|
|J.W. “Bill” Haywood||Y||Y||Y|
|Thomas C. Temple||Y||Y||Y|
|Eugene J. Voiland||Y||Y|
September 26, 2020
Catharine Reheis Boyd, the president of the WSPA, wrote an article for the Sacramento Bee responding to an executive order signed by the Governor of California that would ban the sale of gas-only cars within 15 years to combat climate change. 
The article stated, “when you completely surrender to panic, and dismiss the science and data that have long governed our approach to environmental and energy policy, it only does one thing: it sets California back, increases income inequality and damages an already fragile economy. The economy and our climate-centric environmental policies can work in harmony, but not with one-off executive orders that fail to meet the current reality.”
On the renewable fuel standard (RFS)
“I hate the low carbon fuel standard. A low carbon fuel standard requires you to blend in gasoline a fuel that has a lower carbon intensity. Right now it’s ethanol. But as the standard ramps up, the low carbon fuel will be harder and harder to find. Because we haven’t cracked the nut. We can’t figure out what’s less carbon intensive than what we have. The minute you can’t get to the next increment — you’re going to pay more. The low carbon fuel standard is a regulation, and it’s not a regulation you can comply with.” 
On cap and trade:
“We would support discussing a cap and trade. You can have a well-designed cap and trade and a poorly designed cap and trade. It could be designed worse than the low carbon fuel standard. If Oregon goes down the cap and trade route we hope they will take look at low carbon fuels standard. Because otherwise it is duplicative.” 
On a carbon tax:
“We have members in both camps: cap and trade and carbon tax. We won’t support both.” 
January 10, 2017
WSPA President Catherine Reheis-Boyd released a statement on Governor Brown’s proposal of continued authorization of a cap-and-trade program in California beyond 2020. According to Reheis-Boyd, achieving GHG reductions targets set in 2016 for California “will be difficult and costly” while “achieving the reductions through a well-designed cap-and-trade program will minimize those costs.” 
“Where today’s proposal falls short is that it simply layers the cap-and-trade program on top of costly and counter-productive command-and-control measures, disregarding the increasingly important role of cost containment,” she said. 
September 16, 2016
WSPA released a statement suggesting methane emissions regulations proposed by California Air Resources Board (CARB) be extended by at least one year. WSPA also recommended annual as opposed to quarterly inspections of oil and gas production facilities. 
WSPA released mailers and radio spots to fight against California bill SB 350 (De León-Leno), or the Clean Energy and Pollution Reduction Act of 2015. According to the Union of Concerned Scientists’ (UCS) Adrienne Alvord, who described the WSPA‘s campaign as “one of the most extreme examples of fossil fuel-interest misinformation I’ve ever seen,” the bill was designed to increase California’s share of renewable energy sources to 50%, increase building energy efficiency 50%, and cut California’s usage of oil in half. The mailer was attributed to “California Drivers Alliance,” one of the WSPA‘s “many well-documented astroturf groups.” 
WSPA also co-signed a letter to members of the California State Senate to oppose the bill, calling it a “job killer” and claiming it would make Californian business less competitive. 
East Bay Express reported the California Drivers Alliance campaign included “conspiracy theories of mostly false and misleading claims about SB 350, […] designed to scare voters and get them to contact the moderate Dems so that they’ll vote ‘no’ on the climate bill.” 
“There is a major campaign of fear-mongering that is very visceral. That’s driven at an emotional level,” he said. 
The Sacramento Bee reported that WSPA‘s lobbying expenditures topped $6.7 million, more than double what it spent in the past two quarters, during the final section of the Legislature’s calendar. It was around this time that WSPA was actively fighting against SB 350 and running its ad campaign. 
April 17, 2015
WSPA signed on to a letter with other California business groups opposing the California Global Solutions act of 20016 (SB 32, Pavley). The letter claimed the bill, which would mandate reductions in greenhouse gas emissions to 80% below 1990 levels by 2050, took “no consideration of the economic side effects.” 
The California Drivers Alliance launched a campaign titled “Stop the Hidden Gas Tax,” which warned motorists that gas prices could rise by as much as 76 cents per gallon when provisions under California’s climate law came into effect. UCS noted that, despite these claims, gas prices actually went down on January 1 due, in part, to other factors. 
November 11, 2014
A leaked PowerPoint presentation crafted by the WSPA, a copy which was obtained by Bloomberg Businessweek, revealed the group’s plans to throttle AB 32 (the California Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006) as well as efforts to fight low carbon fuel standards (LCFS) in California, Oregon, and Washington State. , 
The presentation deck, by WSPA President Catherine Reheis-Boyd, lays out an astroturf campaign with the creation of orchestrated “grassroots” groups such as the Oregon Climate Change Campaign, Washington Consumers for Sound Fuel Policy, and AB 32 Implementation Group. 
“The environmental community is used to sky-is-falling analysis from fossil fuel interests in response to clean energy initiatives, so that part isn’t surprising,” commented Tim O’Connor, a senior attorney at the Environmental Defense Fund to whom Bloomberg sent a copy of the presentation. “But it’s eye-opening to see the lengths [the WSPA] has gone to push back rather than move forward. I don’t think anybody knew how cross-jurisdictional, cross-border, and extensive their investment is in creating a false consumer backlash against [climate legislation].” 
January 20, 2012
WSPA, the American Petroleum Institute, and the National Petroleum Refiners Association (now American Fuel and Petrochemical Manufacturers or AFPM) filed a petition with the EPA, asking to retroactively waive the 2011 biofuel requirement made under the renewable fuel standard (RFS). 
California Hispanic Chambers of Commerce (CAHCC)
WSPA and the California Hispanic Chambers of Commerce (CAHCC) have participated in a number of events together and have also shared an overlap of staff members.
A press release announcing former San Joaquin County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (SJCHCC) CEO Brenna Butler would be promoted to a position at Western States Petroleum Association (WSPA) also lists WSPA as a “Chamber Champion.” 
- Brenna Butler Garcia — Formerly the chief executive officer of CAHCC, Garcia was also formerly WSPA‘s manager for marketing and external engagement from Jan. 2016 to Sept. 2017. 
- Nicholas Ortiz — Ortiz formerly worked as a production regions manager for WSPA from June 2011 to April 2015. During that time, he was also a board member of the Kern County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. In 2015, he left WSPA to work for the Bakersfield Chamber of Commerce. , , 
- California Drivers Alliance — Program of the Western States Petroleum Association. 
- Washington Consumers for Sound Fuel Policy — Member. 
- Oregonians for Sound Fuel Policy — Member. 
- Californians for Energy Independence aka “Californians for a Safe, Secure Energy Future” — Member. 
- Californians Against Higher Taxes — Member. 
|Alaska Tanker Company||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y|
|Ashland Oil Company||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y|
|Big West of California, LLC||Y||Y|
|BP/Olympic Pipeline Company||Y||Y||Y|
|CALNEV Pipe Line Company||Y||Y||Y|
|CENCO Refining Company||Y||Y||Y|
|Chevron Products Company||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y|
|Conoco Inc./Yellowstone Pipe Line Company||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y|
|Equilon Enterprises LLC||Y||Y||Y|
|GATX Terminals Corporation||Y||Y|
|Giant Industries Inc.||Y||Y||Y|
|Kinder Morgan Energy Partners||Y||Y|
|Kinder Morgan LP/Santa Fe Pacific Pipeline Co||Y||Y||Y|
|Marathon Oil Company||Y||Y||Y|
|Mobil Oil Corporation||Y||Y|
|Navajo Refining Company||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y|
|Noble Energy, Inc.||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y|
|Nuevo Energy Company||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y|
|Occidental of Elk Hills, Inc.||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y|
|Occidental Oil and Gas Corporation||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y|
|Olympic Pipeline Company||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y|
|Pacific Operators Offshore||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y|
|Plains Exploration and Production Company||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y|
|Polar Tanker, Inc.||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y|
|Poseidon Petroleum, LLC||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y|
|Samedan Oil Corporation||Y||Y||Y||Y|
|Santa Fe Pacific Pipeline Company/Kinder Morgan||Y|
|Santa Maria Energy||Y||Y|
|Santa Maria Pacific||Y|
|Sante Fe Pacific Pipeline Company||Y||Y|
|Texaco Exploration & Production, Inc.||Y||Y||Y|
|Torch Operating Company||Y||Y|
|U.S. Oil & Refining Company||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y|
|Ultramar Diamond Shamrock Corporation||Y||Y||Y|
|US Oil & Refining||Y||Y||Y|
|Yellowstone Pipe Line Company||Y|
|California Resources Corporation||Y||Y|
|Plains All American||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y||Y|
Contact & Address
Western States Petroleum Association 
1415 L Street, Suite 600
Sacramento, CA 95814
Phone: (916) 498-7750
- @OfficialWSPA on Twitter.
- Western States Petroleum Association on LinkedIn.
- @WSPA on Facebook.
- @CA_Drivers (CA Drivers Alliance) on Twitter.
Dan Bacher. “Western States Petroleum Association Continues to Top CA Lobbying Expenses,” CounterPunch, August 19, 2016. Archived September 28, 2017. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/o3Q6R
Bradford Wieners. “Leaked: The Oil Lobby’s Conspiracy to Kill Off California’s Climate Law,” Bloomberg Businessweek, November 25, 2014. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmog.
“About,” California Driver’s Alliance, Archived January 1, 2015.
“http://www.californiadriversalliance.org/” Internet Wayback Machine snapshot.
Dan Bacher. “Western States Petroleum Association Leads Lobbying Spending This Year,” Daily KOS, May 15, 2017. Archived September 28, 2017. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/zutdN
“Oil industry doubled spending on lobbying in California last year,” The Sacramento Bee, February 4, 2015. Archived September 29, 2017. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/sWFlK
“Lobbying Activity: WESTERN STATES PETROLEUM ASSOCIATION,” California Secretary of State Alex Padilla. Accessed September 29, 2017.
“President’s Statement on Cap and Trade – Governor’s Proposal,” WSPA, January 10, 2017. Archived October 7, 2017. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/9YzGn
Adrienne Alvord. “WSPA Lies: Oil Companies Are At It Again… And California Is The Target,” Union of Concerned Scientists, August 19, 2015. Archived October 6, 2017. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/eQFmR
“SB 350 (DE LEON) CLEAN ENERGY AND POLLUTION REDUCTION ACT OF 2015 OPPOSE – JOB KILLER,” Amy Mmagu, California Chamber of Commerce et al, June 3, 2015. Retrieved from CapitolTrack.
Patrick McGreevy. “California Senate leader says oil industry ‘fear-mongering’ on SB 350,” The Los Angeles Times, August 19, 2015. Archived October 7, 2017. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/NPPRv
Jeremy B. White. “Oil industry’s spending surged as it fought California climate bill,” The Sacramento Bee, November 2, 2015. Archived October 7, 2017. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/OJFwI
“SB 32 (PAVLEY) CALIFORNIA GLOBAL SOLUTIONS ACT OF 2006 SET FOR HEARING – APRIL 29, 2015 OPPOSE/JOB KILLER – AS AMENDED MARCH 16, 2015” (PDF), California Chamber of Commerce et al, April 17, 2015. Retrieved from CapitolTrack.
“WSPA Priority Issues” (PDF), Western States Petroleum Association, November 11, 2014. Retrieved from Influencemap.org.
Kris Bevill. “EPA denies oil’s request to waive cellulosic RFS, lawsuit pending,” Ethanol Producer Magazine, May 30, 2012. Archived October 6, 2017. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/2SEq3
“RENEWABLE FUELS STANDARDS (RFS) CHALLENGES UNDER THE ENERGY POLICY ACT OF 2007,” Center for Climate and Energy Solutions. Archived October 6, 2017. Archive.is URL: https://archive.is/DnNPk
Western States Petroleum Association Form 635 for January 1 2018 to April 31, 2018. Retrieved from California Secretary of State.
“SJC Hispanic Chamber Launches Search for ‘The Next Big CEO‘ as Butler-Garcia is Promoted to Western States Petroleum Association,” San Joaquin County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Decembe 18, 2015.
“Great panel re #poweringCalifornia with Margita Thompson -California Resourced Corporation, Argelia Leon -Western States Petroleum Association, Mark Lomeli -Andeavor at @CAHispanic convention.#CAVoice,” Twitter post by user “@latinoLPForum. Archived .png on file at DeSmog.
“The San Joaquin County Hispanic Chamber of [email protected] WSPA legislative day in Sacramento #WSPA #sjchcc,” Twitter Post by user “@CarlosVillapud1,” March 8, 2017. Archived .png on file at DeSmog.
“Brenna Butler Garcia,” LinkedIn. Accessed February 25, 2019. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmog.
“Nicholas Ortiz,” LinkedIn. Accessed February 25, 2019. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmog.
“Nicholas Ortiz, Manager, Production Regions and Property Tax Issues Western States Petroleum Association” (PDF), Independent Energy Producers Association, September 23, 2013. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmog.
Catharine Reheist-Boyd,” Gov. Gavin Newsom’s climate change orders reflect panic, will cost California families,” The Sacramento Bee, September 26, 2020. Archived October 8, 2020. Archive URL: https://archive.vn/OXMxL
“Western States Petroleum Association,” Wikipedia.
“Unmasked: The Oil Industry Campaign to Undermine California’s Clean Energy Future” (PDF), Natural Resource Defence Council, November 2014.
Anne C. Mulkern. “Businesses spent millions lobbying before cap-and-trade vote,” E&E News, July 26, 2017.