Growing up in San Ardo, Albert Madrid used to watch the steady flow of oilfield operations outside his small community. “I fell in love with the oil industry and always wanted to know more about it,” he said.
Madrid is no longer looking in from the outside. Today, he is a reliability specialist at San Ardo, where he oversees steam injectors, wastewater injectors and gas plants. He also does surveillance on weekends, checking wells and group lines. And he still wants to know more.
“I try to learn something new every day,” said Madrid, who joined Aera in 2012 after seven years as a contractor. “I don’t mind asking questions, and I try to help my team and co-workers in any way.”
That curiosity has propelled Madrid into several areas outside his primary responsibility. He is an Aera facilitator for California Accident Prevention Process (CAPP), a behavior-based safety program. Madrid’s CAPP team works to identify and reduce exposure to injury at San Ardo. As a CAPP facilitator, he participates in Aera’s own hands-on safety team (HOST), which works to continually improve health and safety across all assets. He’s an active voice in San Ardo’s morning huddle meetings to address systematic daily improvement, and he collaborates with the subsurface team on well repairs.
“Albert demonstrates a passion for learning and improving every day on the job. He continues to improve his own abilities but also looks for opportunities to help others improve as well. Albert is always ready to take on a challenge and find ways to improve processes,” said Evan Morones, subsurface process specialist in San Ardo.
Under Madrid’s attention, San Ardo’s steam conformance has never been higher. That process plays an important role in improving crude-oil recovery. When he started overseeing steam conformance, it measured in the 70 percent range. Madrid began to carefully monitor all related reports and details.
“It’s the little things that can affect performance,” he said. “If we’re not on our A-game, our conformance would take a big hit. Now we’re at 90 percent or better.”
Madrid’s not going to stop here though. “Subsurface is my passion, but my desire is to learn more, not only about that but also about the surface side of the business,” said Madrid.
This commitment to continuous improvement is an inspiration to Madrid’s team. Mark Du Frene, process supervisors and Madrid’s supervisor, said, “Albert has incredible personal ownership and a strong sense of team spirit. He sets his personal bar very high and challenges himself to continually improve. Whether he is working on steam conformance, which is at an all-time high, or participating and sharing information with the unit from the HOST efforts, he shows the same enthusiasm and dedication.”
Madrid enjoys spending his free time with his wife, Sandy, and their five children: Candy; Albert, Jr.; Ricky; Erik and Julie Mae. The family enjoys baseball games – they’re big Dodger fans – and camping. Madrid not only helps coach his sons’ baseball teams but is brave enough to umpire at their games when needed.