Founder & President
Robert McNally is based in Washington, DC and has over 29 years of government and market experience as an international energy consultant, senior White House policy official, and hedge fund strategist. His expertise spans government, economic, security, and environmental sectors. He is the author of the award-winning and acclaimed book Crude Volatility: The History and the Future of Boom-Bust Oil Prices (Columbia University Press, 2017).
Robert has testified before Congress on energy markets and national security, published on energy in Foreign Affairs (co-authored with Michael Levi), and has been interviewed by CNN, The Economist, NPR, Financial Times, Washington Post, New York Times, PBS’ Great Decisions in Foreign Policy series, Bloomberg News, and other leading journals and programs. He is a Member of the National Petroleum Council and is a non-resident fellow at the Columbia University Center on Global Energy Policy. From 2001 to 2003, he served as the top international and domestic energy advisor on the White House staff, holding the posts of Special Assistant to the President on the National Economic Council and, in 2003, Senior Director for International Energy on the National Security Council. He started his professional career as an oil market analyst and for 12 years analyzed energy markets, macroeconomic policy, and geopolitics for portfolio managers at Tudor Investment Corporation. Robert earned his B.A./B.S. in Political Science and International Relations from American University and his M.A. in International Economics and Foreign Policy from Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS).
Managing Director and Head of Geopolitical Risk Service
Scott Modell is based in Washington, DC and is a highly decorated Central Intelligence Agency officer who served in the Middle East, Central Asia, and Latin America. He is a non-resident fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies and senior advisor to U.S. Special Operations Command.
Scott is a leading expert on Iran and the broader Middle East. As a former Central Intelligence Agency officer, he served for 13 years in the Directorate of Operations, with five tours conducting operations in Latin America, Western Europe, and the Middle East. He participated in post 9-11 operations in Afghanistan, serving on the battlefields in the southern and southeastern regions of the country as a member of paramilitary counter terrorism teams composed of CIA officers and local Afghan forces. At the Center for Strategic and International Studies, he focuses on security issues related to Iran and the Middle East; he also served as an advisor to U.S. Special Operations Command on Counter Threat Finance operations. Scott earned his B.A. in International Relations from UCLA and his M.A. in National Security Studies from Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service.
Director of Business and Content Development
Leslie Hayward drives Rapidan’s business development and guides content development to ensure the team’s expertise delivers the maximum value to their client base. Prior to joining Rapidan, Leslie served as Vice President of Content and Communications Strategy at Securing America’s Future Energy (SAFE).
During her tenure, Leslie contributed to the organization’s policy analysis, donor relations, legislative efforts, and digital and earned media strategy. She launched and served as Managing Editor of SAFE’s independent news and analysis platform, The Fuse, and led the group’s communications team. In addition to knowledge of oil markets and energy geopolitics Leslie’s areas of expertise include electric and autonomous vehicle technology and transportation policy. Leslie received a BS from Tufts University with a double major in International Relations and Environmental Science. Her undergraduate work included a Senior Honors Thesis quantifying the impact of the oil industry and environmental interest lobbying on cap and trade policy, for which she received Tufts’ highest honors.
Director and Managing Editor
Campbell Palfrey is based in Washington, DC and oversees review and publication of all Rapidan Energy Group reports. He brings extensive experience monitoring and analyzing supply/demand fundamentals, geopolitical risks, and policy developments that impact oil prices and investment decisions in the energy sector.
Prior to joining Rapidan Energy Group in 2009, Campbell was the Project Director for an international market research firm, where his team focused on identifying and analyzing consumer trends in the technology and telecommunication sectors. He earned his B.A. in Comparative Literature from Haverford College and his M.A. in International Economics and Energy, Resources & Environment at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS).
Director, China Advisory Service
GeFei Li leads Rapidan Energy Group’s China Advisory Service. His 30-plus year professional career includes oil and gas technology, research, and business posts spanning operational management, strategic investing, and regulatory advisory work in China and the US.
Mr. Li began his professional career in 1985 as a Research Associate for China’s National Oil Ministry and a lecturer at China’s Petroleum University. In 1991, upon completion of his business education, Mr. Li joined Sonoco Corporation, where for twelve years he worked in operations management, investment and China joint venture management. From 2003 to 2018, Mr. Li served as the Managing Partner of Cynergy-Global, LLC, a China investment advisory firm that specializes in energy, environment and technology related cross border transactions. Mr. Li earned his B.E. in geophysics and electrical engineering from China’s Petroleum University and his MBA from Wake Forest University’s Babcock School of Management. He was a frequent speaker for the Economist Conferences during the early 2000s and has continuously provided global investment advice to State-Owned Enterprises on clean energy and environmental technology investment in China over the past decade. Mr. Li travels frequently between China and the US and enjoys mentoring young professionals on both sides of the Pacific.
Director, Global Gas Service
Wayne Ackerman provides Rapidan clients with bespoke, strategic advice and analysis on the global gas market and industry. He specializes in shaping and developing commercial strategy, developing negotiating and engagement plans, and conducting comprehensive risk assessments across the gas value chain. Wayne has more than 30 years of experience in the global energy business.
Wayne recently left Saudi Aramco, where he held senior roles in Strategy, Corporate Planning, and Upstream and developed the company’s international gas strategy, which was sanctioned by the Saudi Aramco Board in 2018. Prior to joining Saudi Aramco, Wayne held various technical, commercial, and leadership roles in production geology, reservoir management, business development, strategic relations, competitive intelligence, corporate strategy, and contracting & procurement at Shell. He was heavily involved with the development of LNG projects (small scale and conventional) in Australia and North America, in addition to reservoir management and commercial negotiations for various Shell projects in the Middle East. Wayne previously worked for Schlumberger and Phillips Petroleum in new business development and exploration/production geology, respectively. Wayne holds a master’s degree in Geology from The University of Tulsa and a bachelor’s degree in Geology from the University of Colorado, Boulder. He is a member of the American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG) and the Association of International Petroleum Negotiators (AIPN).
Director, Energy Policy Service
Glenn Schwartz is based in Washington, DC and oversees Rapidan Energy Group’s Energy Policy Service. He is a Clean Air Act attorney and an expert on the energy sector implications of environmental regulation, law and policy.
Prior to joining Rapidan Energy Group, Glenn spent 6 years at PIRA Energy Group, where he served as the chief legal, political and regulatory risk analyst in the emissions and clean energy group. In his capacity as the group’s Director of Legal Analysis, he was tasked with tracking and interpreting major regulations and legislation impacting emissions and energy markets on the state, federal and international levels. In addition, Glenn served as the firm’s hydraulic fracturing policy expert, tracking litigation, regulation, and legislation on the federal, state, and local levels and analyzing impacts on production volumes and costs. Previously, as a practicing attorney, Glenn advised clients and stakeholders on a wide variety of environmental and regulatory issues involving the Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, and relevant state statutes. Glenn holds a B.A. in Economics from the University of Pennsylvania and a J.D. from Temple University’s Beasley School of Law.
Director, Global Oil Service
Allyson Cutright is Rapidan Energy Group’s lead barrel counter. She has extensive experience tracking oil supply/demand fundamentals and assessing the market impact of policy changes and developments in the upstream and downstream sectors. She oversees the Rapidan’s global oil supply and demand balances, oil price forecasts, US Shale Play-By-Play and Agency Balance Comparison reports.
Prior to joining Rapidan Energy Group, Allyson helped cover banking and tax policy in the office of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and worked in government affairs as a liaison for a non-profit healthcare organization. She earned her B.A. in Classics from the University of Kentucky, where she also completed post-baccalaureate coursework in advanced Mathematics. She earned her MSc in Petroleum, Energy Economics & Finance at the University of Aberdeen in Scotland, where she graduated with highest honors. Her graduate dissertation used quantitative analysis to assess the progressivity of Alaska’s oil-related fiscal policies.
Director, Geopolitical Risk Service
Fernando Ferreira is based in Washington, DC and covers global oil markets, with a focus on geopolitical supply risks. He oversees Rapidan Energy Group’s Barrels-at-Risk reporting, which analyzes and forecasts disrupted and threatened oil production on a country-level basis.
Fernando was instrumental in helping Rapidan Energy Group Founder Robert McNally research and write his 2017 book Crude Volatilty: The History and Future of Boom-Bust Oil Prices (Columbia University Press, 2017). Prior to joining the Rapidan Energy Group, Fernando worked as a research intern with the Energy and National Security Program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, where he focused on oil markets and geopolitics. Originally from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Fernando earned his B.S. in Economics and his Masters in International Commerce & Policy from George Mason University.
Nick Hyland is based in Washington, DC and covers the downstream global oil sector. Prior to his current position, Nick interned at Rapidan Energy working on geopolitical issues and with the office of Congressman John Katko.
Nick earned his B.A. in International Studies from American University. He also studied abroad in Rabat, Morocco.
Energy Policy Analyst
Sam Reynolds is based in Washington, DC and covers US energy policy and environmental regulation. Prior to joining Rapidan, Sam covered US midstream operations and Middle East geopolitical risk for the International Technology and Trade Associates, Inc.
Sam earned his B.A. in international development from McGill University and his M.A. from Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, specializing in electricity market design and international environmental law. He managed student-run publications at both universities and has written extensively on international energy issues for various media outlets.
Chief Financial Officer
Christopher Meyerhoff is based in Washington, DC and has several decades’ experience strategizing, planning, and managing financial operations for top-tier energy consultancies. Prior to joining Rapidan Energy Group, Christopher served as CFO & Partner at Washington-based PFC Energy, where he managed the firm’s operations in 7 countries, including strategy and planning, financial reporting and compliance, client and legal matters, IT, IP, and human resources.
Previously, Chris was the Finance Director for Petroleum Intelligence Weekly, publisher of several leading industry publications, and an analyst providing short-term oil market forecasts and economic analysis. Chris also served as Research Economist in the U.S. Senate (Joint Economic Committee) and as an Economist for Wharton Econometric Forecasting Associates. He holds a B.A. in Economics from Georgetown University and an M.B.A. (Finance & Investments) from The George Washington University.
Sabine Leffler is based in Washington, DC and brings extensive experience as an office manager for Tudor Investment Corporation - a leading global Hedge Fund - and as a program coordinator for the Friedrich Ebert Foundation.
Sabine managed Tudor Investment Corporation’s Washington office for ten years. Prior to that, she was a Program Coordinator for the Friedrich Ebert Foundation in Washington, DC, where she organized visitor programs for German officials with American think tanks and non-profit organizations. Sabine received her B.A. in Linguistics from the Université de Provence, Aix-en-Provence, France and her Masters in economic translation from the Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz, Germersheim, Germany.
Client Relations Manager
Kevin McNally is based in Connecticut and oversees Rapidan Energy Group’s client relations and business development efforts.
He has extensive experience managing client relationships gained in his previous position covering commercial and residential clients for Fidelity National Financial. Earlier, Kevin worked for Stewart Title Guaranty, a Houston-based provider of national real estate services. He earned his B.A. from Salve Regina University and J.D. from Quinnipiac University School of Law in Connecticut. He is a licensed attorney.
Yashna is based in Washington, DC and oversees clerical and administrative duties at Rapidan Energy Group.
Prior to her current position, Yashna helped coordinate various programs for Indian officials at the Embassy of India in Washington, DC. Yashna received her Bachelors of Sciences from Indhira Gandhi University in New Delhi, India.