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Queensland Petroleum and Exploration Association est. 1959 is a not-for-profit association that aims to provide members and the oil and gas community an opportunity to share experience and information, as well as to cultivate professional networks by hosting monthly guest speaker events. Its success as an industry association can be attributed to its membership base including not only petroleum explorers, producers and industry service companies but also consultants, banks, accounting and legal organisations, analysts, human resource organisations, power generators and gas infrastructure operators.

Members include company representatives, from senior executive through to graduate level, and self-employed consultants and retired members.


The Queensland Petroleum Exploration Association was established in 1959, making it one of Australia’s oldest oil and gas industry groups. Six years after the first post-war strike at Rough Range, followed by gas at Hospital Hill No.4 and Port Campbell but before the discoveries of Cabawin (1960) , Moonie (1961), Timbury Hills and Pickajinnie(1960).

The Americans were discovering the large tracts of sedimentary basins available for exploration and Herb Harris and Roy Hopkins of Magellan, Joe Tanner of Phillips, all preceded by Weldon Hightower of Austral Geo Prospectors and other Americans were making their headquarters in Brisbane. They missed their friendly petroleum clubs and Herb Harris especially, found scouting difficult, having to visit companies weekly to ask what they were doing instead of finding out over a friendly drink. He circulated a letter dated 23rd November, 1959 proposing the formation of a petroleum organisation “able to set up committees for scout checks, employment possibilities, standardisation of drilling supplies, bulk ordering of oilfield supplies, relations with Government agencies, exchange of information etc.”

A band of five, consisted of Joe Tanner and Herb Harris from America and the locals, Bill Siller, Dick Mott and Doug Traves formed a Steering Committee to get QUPEX on the road. The first meeting was held on the evening of 3rd December, 1959 at the National Hotel, Brisbane. Joe Tanner was elected the first Chairman with Doug Traves Vice Chairman and it was understood that the chair would alternate annually between Australians and Americans.

Throughout the years Qupex has had a number of social events all dedicated to the fostering of the social atmosphere that is truly qupex. The best known event is the Qupex Classic Golf Tournament played on a Thursday and Friday in July. The tournament is over 50 years old and an exceptional two days of some serious and light hearted golfing.