James M. Brooks
President and C.E.O. TDI - Brooks International Inc.
Director, B&B Laboratories Inc.
President, GEO3 Inc.
Dr. Brooks is President of TDI-Brooks International, Inc. a company specializing in offshore research and survey studies for federal/state agencies as well as the oil industry. TDI-Brooks was founded in May 1996 and performs $15 to $20 million of projects each year. The company owns and operates three research vessels ---the R/V GEOEXPLORER, R/V GYRE and R/V JW POWELL. Dr. Brooks was the founder and Director of the Geochemical and Environmental Research Group (GERG) at Texas A&M University from 1975 until September 1995. As Director between 1975 and 1996, he built an organization specializing in high quality analytical, oceanographic and environmental research and services with annual revenues between 1991 and 1995 of around $10 million/year. In August 1995, he directed a staff of ~130 people, including 28 Ph.D. level senior personnel, ~60 professional MS-and BS-level full-time research associates, research assistants, technicians, graduate research assistants, and ~40 other staff. He has been Project Director on many federal projects for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the US Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA), Office of Naval Research (ONR), the Minerals Management Service (MMS), the US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), and other state and federal agencies. He has extensive experience in the management of large environmental and oceanographic projects as well as the technical competency in environmental and geochemistry, surface geochemical exploration, oil spill assessment, gas hydrates, chemosynthetic ecosystems, stable isotope geochemistry, and oceanography. He has academic credentials consisting of 200 peer-review publications including numerous publications in prestigious journals such as Science and Nature. He has served on many national committees, conferences and workshops. He has chaired 19 M.S. and Ph.D. committees at Texas A&M University. He has won the Faculty Distinguished Achievement Award for Research awarded annually by the Association of Former Students of Texas A&M University. He holds an appointment in the Faculty of Toxicology at Texas A&M University. He is currently an Advisory Council Member, Southeast Advisory Council for Undersea Research and Education (SEACURE) for NOAA’s Undersea Research Center at UNCW (NURC). Dr. Brooks manages at TDI-Brooks the current 5-year contract for the NOAA National Status and Trends (NS&T) Mussel Watch project, which is the premier, long standing coastal environmental monitoring program in the nation. He is in his 20th year of management of this project. He is also Project Director of a 5-year US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) contract for trace organic residue analysis and various other EPA and NOAA projects. Dr. Brooks also directs over $10 million yearly of industry sponsored projects many of which are multidisciplinary.
Dr. Brooks has participated in and/or managed a number of MMS projects over the last twenty (20) years both in the Gulf of Mexico and offshore California. On most of these projects his responsibility included project management and/or the contaminant chemistry work element. He was Project Director for the 1991 Chemosynthetic Ecosystem Study ($1.4 million/31 months) of oil and gas seep communities in the Gulf of Mexico. This project resulted from many of his early discoveries of gas hydrates, oil seepage and chemosynthetic mussels, clams and tubeworms in the deep water Gulf. He has about forty (40) peer-reviewed publications on chemosynthetic ecosystems and associated seep-related phenomena. He was Chemistry Group Leader for the Gulf of Mexico Offshore Operations Monitoring Experiment (GOOMEX) which was funded at $4.4 million/31 months (Chemistry Group Leader). On this project he was responsible for the review and integration of the hydrocarbon and trace metal work elements. He was a member of the Scientific Review Board and provided the chemical analysis for the Southern California Platform Study under subcontract to SAIC. He was Project Director of the Mississippi-Alabama Marine Ecosystem Study ($3.2 million/3 years). He was a Principal Investigator responsible for the field collection, chemistry elements and physical oceanography for the Northern Gulf of Mexico Slope Study under subcontract to LGL Associates. In the late 1970’s/ early 1980’s, he was Co-PI responsible for parts of the hydrocarbon component of the South Texas OCS Study. TDI-Brooks under subcontract to CSA is currently providing the field collection and hydrocarbon chemistry components of the MMS “Deepwater Program: Effects of Oil and Gas Exploration and Development at Selected Continental Slope Sites in the Gulf of Mexico” project. TDI-Brooks’ research vessel, the R/V JW POWELL, was used for the field sampling on this project. Dr. Brooks is currently managing the MMS funded project “Investigations of Chemosynthetic Communities on the Lower Continental Slope of the Gulf of Mexico.”
Dr. Brooks has been conducting research and oil industry-sponsored service projects in the Gulf of Mexico for the last twenty-five (25) years. As part of his surface geochemical exploration (SGE) studies, which he developed for industry in the early 1980’s, he has collected approximately 9,000 cores in the Gulf, mostly in the deep water. These SGE coring studies resulted and contributed to the discoveries of macro oil seepage, chemosynthetic communities, and gas hydrates in the Gulf of Mexico. He was a co¬discoverer of oil seep and chemosynthetic communities in the deep water Gulf of Mexico in 1985. He made the first discoveries of thermogenic gas hydrates in the deep water Gulf of Mexico that was published in Science as well as participated in the initial discoveries of other oil-seep related phenomena including oil-stained cores on the continental slope, widespread occurrence of shallow and outcropping gas hydrates, brine seepage, and visible oil seepage to the sea surface. In the late 80’s and early 90’s he was awarded extensive NOAA National Undersea Research Program (NURP) JOHNSON SEA-LINK, ALVIN, and Navy NR-1 submersible dive time in the Gulf of Mexico. His current SGE coring and satellite seep studies in the southern Gulf for PEMEX resulted in the recent publication in Science on the discovery of tar flows and chemosynthetic communities in the Campeche Knoll region offshore Mexico. He has also made the first chemosynethetic ecosystems discovery of chemosynthetic ecosystems in West Africa (i.e., Nigeria) north of the equator.