About Us






Our Mission

The North Dakota Petroleum Foundation’s mission is to provide and support education and outreach opportunities related to the petroleum industry, develop and advance quality of life initiatives, and promote and enhance the conservation heritage of North Dakota.

A 501(c)(3) nonprofit, the North Dakota Petroleum Foundation was founded by the North Dakota Petroleum Council in 2018 to support our state and the communities in which we operate. Through outreach programs, scholarships and educational opportunities, and environmental stewardship programs, we strive to help our neighbors make our communities better places to live, work, and raise a family.

The Foundation is supported by revenues from the Williston Basin Petroleum Conference, as well as donations from the North Dakota Petroleum Council, the Foundation’s Board of Directors, industry companies and employees, grants from the Oil and Gas Research Council and Outdoor Heritage Fund, and others.

What We Do


We provide educational resources about the oil and gas industry for both teachers and students, and fund scholarships for students seeking a lucrative career in the industry.


We foster opportunities for industry, landowners, state, local and tribal leaders, and others to connect and work together to build stronger communities. 


We promote best practices in the development of our resources and partner with others to preserve and build habitat and access to the outdoors.


We encourage a better understanding of the industry, the technologies and innovation that drives it, and the benefits it provides to our economy and society.

Board of Directors & Leadership

Josh Demorrett


Joel Noyes
Vice Chair

Hess Corporation

Jeff Herman


Kate Klossner


Whitney Stephenson


Danette Welsh


Tessa Sandstrom
Executive Director

North Dakota Petroleum Foundation

Our Story

Beginning in 1978 with the creation of its Teacher Education Seminar, the North Dakota Petroleum Council (NDPC) has continually designed and developed its various outreach programs in pursuit of its mission. Those outreach programs have been exponentially expanded in the last 10 years to include such educational opportunities as the Energy of North Dakota Teacher Education Seminar, Energy Career Awareness Partnership, and scholarships to those seeking petroleum-related degrees.

At the dawn of the “Bakken Boom” in 2008, the NDPC started the Bakken Rocks CookFests to bring communities and industry together to learn more from one another in a fun, friendly atmosphere. Since then, its community engagement activities have evolved to include the Battle of the Bakken Blood Drive, Fueling Fun Toy Drive, and the Code for the Road initiative.

Beginning in 2012, the NDPC initiated environmental stewardship programs with the creation of Pick Up the Patch!, an award-winning program that brought communities and industry together to keep communities and roadways litter-free. Since then, its stewardship programs have grown to include the Bakken Classic Fishing Derby, a charitable fishing tournament that raises funds for habitat and wildlife projects, and the Planting for the Future program dedicated to providing funding and assistance in creating habitat through large-scale tree plantings in cooperation with landowners.

As the NDPC’s philanthropic efforts continued to expand, the idea for the Foundation was born. The Foundation will be committed to continuing these programs and engaging industry and communities to further enhance North Dakota’s educational opportunities and quality of life.

trees planted

Through Planting for the Future, we’ve committed to building habitat for future generations by planting more than 118,000 trees in North Dakota since 2018.

dollars donated

We’ve donated more than $80,000 to the Mule Deer Foundation, Pheasants Forever, On The Water, and other organizations promoting habitat and access to the outdoors.

in scholarships

Through the Al Golden Scholarship, we’ve given more than $120,000 in scholarships to students pursuing an education and career in energy-related fields.


More than 10,000 industry employees have given their time to pick up litter, speak to students, plant trees, and more to make our communities better places to live.

Our Sponsors and Supporters







Our events and efforts aren't possible without the support of our members. Thanks to all our Premier Partners for their sponsorship! Learn more about becoming a Premier Partner here