A significant number of Aramcon annuitants share in the honor of having once taught school in Saudi Arabia. Like so many other ex-Aramcons, they maintain their friendships from way back when even to this day.
Recently a group of them, along with spouses, held a joyous, fun-filled reunion in Las Vegas. They traded stories about what’s happening in their lives today and shared memories of their common experience of having taught together in Abqaiq. For them, teaching in the Kingdom was a calling, and they’ve never lost their enthusiasm for the dramatic story in which they played a part in the 1970′s.
Attending the reunion were: Jary and Jane Archer; Gary and Ana Maria Clark; Cecelia (McKenna) Doughty; Byron and Cindy Herbert; Art and Roshni Herbert; Howard and Diane Heffernan; Shirley Hurt; D. J. (Collington) Knickrehm; Tom and Stephanie McNicholas; Jeanette (Nader) Packard; Jeff and Carol Reppuns; Tim Sandin; Bob and Linda Simms; and Donna Smith.
Kudos to all of them for jobs well done and for the significant contributions they made to their fellow Aramcons, their children and Aramco.
April Allen, Daughter of Claude and Verna Allen (Dhahran, 1985 – 2000) has recently been promoted to the position of Reserve Flight Captain by the EATON Corp. Flight Department in Cleveland Ohio.
April started her flight training in boarding school (Admiral Farragut Academy) where at the age of 17, earned her Private Pilot Certificate. She went on to obtain her Commercial and Flight Instructor Ratings (CFI and CFII) and Airline Transport Rating (ATP). April has worked as a Flight Instructor, a Contract Pilot, and Corporate Pilot for a number of Flight Schools and Charter companies in Florida. April is rated on a number of Corporate Aircraft to include the Beechcraft 1900 Airliner, the Learjet 35, 45 and 55, the Hawker and Beechjet and the Challenger 300. She is current in both the Lear 45 and Challenger. April has been flying for EATON since 2013.
A group of SAEEA Office Holders with Mr. Mumtaz Ahmad
The monthly progress meeting of Saudi Aramco Ex-Employees Association (SAEEA) held on May 02, 2015:
The attendees were as follows:
- Kamal A. Farooqi (KAF)
- Engr. Iqbal Ahmed Khan (IAK)
- Ghulam Qutubuddin Khan (GQK)
- Mohammad Abdul Matin (MAM)
- Muhammad Salim Hamid (MSH)
- Shafiq Ahmed Khan (SAK)
The highlights of the meeting were as follows:
- Kamal A. Farooqi (KAF) thanked GQK for providing his house for the meeting and arranging a very delicious lunch for all the attendees. KAF, with other Members of Managing Committee, congratulate GQK for his successful trip to Saudi Arabia. During his trip, he attended Saudi Aramco Reunion 2015 and performed UMRA.
- KAF highlighted the activities occurred during the month of March/April, 2015.
- Since this was the first meeting after SAEEA 12th Reunion, KAF appreciated Managing Committee for organizing the 12th reunion which is equally praised by all the Attendees.
- KAF noticed that few regular Members are taking less interest in SAEEA. Therefore, he suggested paying personal visits to the Members and inquires about their welfare.
- KAF with the agreement of other Members, decided to have SAEEA 13th Reunion after Eid (end of July, 2015). At the same time SAEEA will also celebrate its 5th anniversary. KAF requested MAM and others for looking a good place for the next function.
- Since Mrs. Qamar Khan has joined SAEEA as a Ladies Representative, KAF feels a separate meeting with the two Ladies Representatives. MAM to arrange the meeting.
- SAEEA very active Member, Mr. Ateequr Rahman Khan, not only praised 12th Reunion, but has some suggestions for SAEEA future activities. KAF feels a personal visit to Mr. Ateeq’s house.
- IAK facing problems in running/maintaining SAEEA website. Therefore, he will meet few Companies for smooth functioning of SAEEA website.
- GQK briefed, in detail, about his trip to Saudi Arabia.
- MSH presented updated SAEEA account.
- MAM and SAK advised all Attendees that they visited one Farm House for SAEEA 13th Reunion. They will also visit other places for this purpose.
- SAEEA regular Members, Ikhtiarun Nabi and Mumtaz Ahmad are US/Canadian Citizens and currently visiting Pakistan. After the meeting, all Managing Committee Members visited these Friends and presented SAEEA souvenirs to them.
- KAF prayed for fast recovery of all sick people, especially for MSH’s mother, Iftikhar Ahmed, Anwar Mirza, Jaleel, Sher Ali, Iqtidar Ahmed, Mumtaz Ahmad, Farough and others.
If you have any questions then please call Engr. Iqbal Ahmed Khan on +92-321-701-4929 or write to him on firstname.lastname@example.org
The company has taken another stride toward becoming a global leader in technology, and research and development with the opening of the Beijing Research Center (BRC) in Beijing, China last week.
HE Ali I. Al-Naimi, Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources, officially opened the state-of-the-art 4,400 sq. meter center, making it the latest addition to Saudi Aramco’s global research and development network. It will be managed and operated by Aramco’s office in Beijing.
The inauguration ceremony was led by Al-Naimi; Yahya Al-Zaid, Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to China; Amin H. Nasser, acting president and CEO of Saudi Aramco; Ahmad O. Al Khowaiter, chief technology officer; Ahmed A. Al-Subaey, executive director for Marketing, Supply, and Joint Ventures Coordination; and Ibrahim Q. Al-Buainain, president of Aramco Asia.
The inauguration ushers in a new era of collaboration between the two countries, founded on a commitment to knowledge, research, and innovation, Al-Naimi said in keynote remarks at the opening attended by government officials from Saudi Arabia and China as well as business partners.
“Saudi Arabia recognizes that the participation of its leading companies in China’s innovation system today brings great potential for mutual benefit tomorrow,” Al-Naimi said. “It is a part of our plan to engage in global innovation in regions that have complementary expertise and capacities.”
Aramco’s global research program encompasses facilities in Houston, Detroit, and Boston in North America, as well as European facilities in Aberdeen in the UK, Paris in France, and Delft in the Netherlands.
The Beijing center extends the company’s research network in Asia, joining the CO2 Management Center at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) in Daejeon, South Korea.
These facilities complement Saudi Aramco’s EXPEC Advanced Research Center (EXPEC ARC) and the Research and Development Center (R&DC) activities in Dhahran, and another key Saudi research center in Thuwal at King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST).
Nasser spoke at a panel session about “Energy and Sustainability Challenges in China and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia: Potential and Mechanisms for Future Cooperation.” He said the BRC would deliver “step changes” in Aramco’s global research capabilities.
“This research facility will add momentum as we produce fit-for-purpose innovation and technologies tied to our objectives and business needs,” Nasser said. “These areas are crucial to Saudi Aramco’s strategic goals in discovery, recovery, sustainability, and reliability, and therefore, they are the center’s main research thrust. Another key enabler is that China has a world-renowned expertise in chemical and enhanced oil recovery.”
Al-Buainan explained why Saudi Aramco chose Beijing.“We view the BRC as the nucleus of technology and innovation development, and will bring about desired results,” he said, “such as the development of cutting-edge technologies, not only in the upstream field, but also in the downstream sector, renewable energy, and energy efficiency.”
BRC director Khalid O. Rufaii added: “One of the main objectives of the center is to create science and develop technology that fundamentally changes and improves how we explore for oil and gas, extend reserves, and manage reservoirs.”
Commodore, Royal Saudi Navy (Retired)
Saudi Arabia is a huge country with a population of about 30 million. One-third of the population consists of expatriates coming from different parts of the world and bringing with them different ways of lifestyles.
One reason for this high number of expatriates is the continuity of stability and prosperity in the country. At a time when the world particularly the region is faced with an apparently never-ending turmoil, Saudi Arabia continues to adapt to the changing regional scenario. Time and again, it has proved that it is more open to changes contrary to the beliefs of many outsiders.
Saudi Arabia’s strategic importance in world’s politics has increased beyond imagination. During the past few months, the world has witnessed Kingdom’s highly transparent approach toward various issues.
We recently witnessed a massive shuffling at the highest level of power. For the first time in the history of the Kingdom, the second generation has been brought to the fore in the line of succession.
At the same time, these massive changes showed the unity among members of the Saudi royal family. These events are reflected the high degree of confidence and understanding between the ruler and the ruled.
Saudis showed the world the true meaning of flexibility in governing a country and adaptability to any changes without any backlash.
Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman visited his younger brother, Prince Muqrin, after his resignation from the position of the crown prince. All these changes took place very smoothly and in a transparent manner. It was so nice to see the manner in which Crown Prince Mohammed bin Naif, deputy premier and minister of interior, and Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman, second deputy premier and minister of defense, greeted the older and younger members of the Saudi royal family and all other Saudis. There was mutual respect and simplicity.
While announcing the massive shuffle, King Salman stressed that the Saudi citizens’ well-being and comfort came first in all forms of developments. We all know about the plans for more mega projects for the good of the Saudis. King Salman made it clear that the door of all Saudi officials were open to all Saudis. Fortunately, our rulers have always treated us in the similar manner since the establishment of the Kingdom. But at this stage the world is evolving faster. The majority of Saudis are very young and the youths have more and different demands. As the Saudi government is planning serious political, social and economic reforms, the youths also want a faster pace of reforms.
Saudi Arabia is still a conservative society and the pace of reforms has always been a bit slow but now the society, particularly the youths, want a faster pace. But in order to increase the pace of reforms, we have to teach our youth that reforms need many more responsibilities and accountabilities. The Saudi youths should learn now how to adapt to changes caused due to reforms. The most important thing the youths want is a further opening up of the job market for them. At the same time the youths must learn and adopt better work habits. There are many jobs available and it is important for them to be ready to do any kind of job and work their way up. There should be no free lunch.
Many youths want faster pace of reforms in the field of entertainment such as opening of movie theaters. This also requires a change of behavior among the youths. Social and economic reforms mean that the youth have a duty to study hard, work harder and respect everybody.
Faster pace of reforms also requires that the youths should realize they are not alone in the society; there are others who have different tastes and different interests. Social reforms require all youths to be more responsible. In other words, an individual can’t ask for speedy reforms if he doesn’t respect others. Driving a car properly or not throwing garbage on the street is part of social reforms. We cannot completely rely on our government in the effective implementation of social reforms; we all have to play our due roles in this regard.
Written by Abdulateef Al‐Mulhim. Fast-Tracking Reforms reprinted with permission of Arab News and Abdulateef Al‐Mulhim.