Alissa A. Henza is a structural geologist and petroleum exploration geoscientist. She earned a BS, Cum Laude in Science of Earth Systems from Cornell University in 2003. She received a MSc (2006) and a PhD (2009) from Rutgers University. For her dissertation, Alissa worked with Drs. Martha Withjack and Roy Schlische on physical modeling of multiphase extensional systems, investigating the role that a pre-existing fault fabric has on the development of new normal faults. This work, and the resulting publications (Henza et al., 2010 and 2011), each have over 100 citations and continue to be relevant to the field of normal-fault development and structural inheritance. Alissa recently gave a talk on her dissertation work to the AAPG Structure and Geomechanics division. AAPG PSGD Webinar/Q&A: Alissa Henza presents Structural Inheritance in Rift Basins - YouTube
Alissa is currently a Senior Exploration Geologist at Equinor, and has previously worked at BHP Billiton and Kerogen Exploration, LLC. Her main job role is integrating multiple data types to unravel the tectonic evolution of local structures and determine their likelihood to be good candidates for oil exploration. She has worked on basins worldwide, including the South China Sea; Offshore Australia (Gippsland Basin); Deepwater Bay of Campeche, Mexico; Deepwater US Gulf of Mexico; and the US onshore Gulf Coast. Her jobs in international oil companies have given her the opportunity to collaborate with researchers at multiple universities and institutes, be a representative for her company at multiple consortia, and travel to Chile, England, and Norway.
Favorite Rutgers Memory
Some of Alissa’s favorite memories and experiences at Rutgers are when she was a Teaching Assistant for Mineralogy and Structural Geology. One truly impactful moment was a comment on a course evaluation that approximately read, “Don’t say that something is easy. It might be easy for you, but it is hard for us.” That comment, and the thought behind how you teach others and make others feel while you are teaching, has shaped how Alissa interacts with managers, co-workers, and individuals she is mentoring to this day.